Thursday, November 12, 2015

Day 49: All A-Bored

I bored myself today.  Even with staying home yesterday, I'm still feeling worn down.  Perhaps I need more vitamins.  The transition to having my alarm go off at 4:30 hasn't been very smooth.

In addition, beyond fusion, I don't care all that much about the working of the sun.  It's easy to let my passion show through when talking about various topics, but this one? Meh.

I am, however, concerned that if I rush through topics that don't particularly interest me, I'll run out of topics for this course.  So I've decided to add a project and give the students a choice about which one they would like to do.

1) Sun Research Paper: 2 pages exploring the relationship between the sun and the earth.  Students will pick a topic to examine (space weather, atmosphere, climate, etc.) and look into what effects it has on human endeavors or the world around us.

2) Layers of the Sun Model: Students will create a 3 dimensional model of the sun that displays, identifies and explains the purpose and features of each later.

Both projects will be due on the Monday before Thanksgiving and I think it will be in lieu of a chapter test.  I'm tired of tests.

I think a large portion of this comes from my lack of familiarity with this content in an academic way.  I love astronomy, but never having taught it before, I'm not sure which topics I need to hit and which I can skip.  I also haven't built up a list of fun activities yet.

In physics, we kept working through problems, going over the ones I asked them to work in my absence.  I think much of their trepidation will be set aside through practice.

We finished class with a classic "two trains are travelling towards each other" problem and had an interesting discussion about relativity.

If one train is going at 80 km/h and the other is moving at 120 km/h, is that the same as one train moving at 200 km/h towards a wall?  They had several theories.

On a related note, I love when I do Google image searches and come up with pictures from sites runs by my friends.  Thanks, Math Forum!