Day 56: Relativity is Special in General

Wednesday, Dec 6

Physics: Finishing up general relativity. I tried to do my homework, but I just don’t have a good grasp on relativity yet. Mine is better than the students’, but I need to spend a lot more time studying this and putting the ideas together so I understand them well enough to tell a compelling story. I used YouTube videos as a crutch to help me out, but I have a bad habit of not fully vetting the videos before showing them or checking out new videos that look like they might be neat during class, so they aren’t always exactly what I was after. Definite things to improve for next year.

Honors Physics: Properties of light. We talked about all the things you can measure, and then we started talking about how we know it’s a wave or a particle. I started walking them through the photoelectric effect and what each model predicts, and I didn’t make it clear enough what we were doing so they kept asking me to clarify what was true and how it could be both. Keep yer britches on, kids! We’re not to conclusions, we’re building predictions! Sheesh. I should have done more exposition about the purpose behind this, so I’ll backtrack tomorrow and see what I can do to clarify.

AP Physics: We finished up talking about gravity with the inverse square relationship and an introduction to vector fields. It was a fun day for me and mind-bending for them, so a good day all around.

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