Resolving a Struggle with Google

For months, I have been searching for a way to ensure my students have been doing thier homework without having to take in copious amounts of paper.  Google Forms has come to my rescue!

Photo by Liz Halina CC-BY-NC-ND

Photo by Liz Halina CC-BY-NC-ND

Not only can I send all of my students the concept questions via Google Form, their answers are convieniently placed on a Google Sheet with a date/time stamp for me to see when they completed the assignment.

Three key pieces of information were quickly determined: some students did NOT do thier work (nothing but blank where their response should have been); some students were completing their work after midnight (clearly a problem with getting adequate rest and balance); and misconceptions were easilty identified.

The more I use Google Apps for Educators, the more practical applications I can see for my students, my department, and myself for constructing meaning and communication.  Next week during our professional development afternoon, I will give my department a demonstration of a site that I constructed and how I am using it in class.  #excited

Google Drive

How did I make it through Coetail and not know some of these features of Google Drive? Imbedding a Doc right into a blog post so everyone can see?  Who knew?  Not me.  I tried imbedding  course outline on a page on this blog, and while a tad on the ugly side (could be the theme’s fault – couldn’t be mine, of course!) it’s there!

I am only using Google Drive with my physics class (as opposed to all of my classes) and the students are all brand new to using Google beyond searching and email, which I am sure most users are familiar with. So far, I’m the owner of all the documents we have been using as the class learns to collaborate and add to the docs.

This week, the students are required to hand in a lab report by creating and sharing a doc with me for commenting only. Its a start, but I am hopeful that the students will eventually create and share thier own docs with each other. Each time I do part of a unit, I plan on teaching the students another feature to gradually scaffold them into independent use of Google Drive.

Baby steps – for both me and the students!

I think I’m Becoming a Physics Teacher!

We are one week into our new semester and I’ve begun teaching another new Physics class: Physics 30.  A grade 12 course with an Alberta Diploma exam at the end, there is a lot riding on this course for some of my students who want to get into university.  thankfully, I’m staying ahead, creating solutions keys, locating links, and posting it all in my Google Drive and blog.  The students can have access to my notes anytime and the are expected to contribute and collaborate, not just consume.  Wish me (and my students) luck!

Physics 20: Unit 1, Kinematics

Essential Questions:

  • How do changes in position, velocity and acceleration allow us to predict the paths of moving objects and systems?
  • How do the principles of kinematics influence the development of new mechanical technologies?

Enduring Understanding:

  • Describe motion in terms of displacement, velocity, acceleration and time

Students will know:

  • scalar quantities
  • vector quantities
  • uniform motion
  • uniformly accelerated motion

two-dimensional motion
Students will be able to:

  • define, qualitatively and quantitatively, displacement, velocity and acceleration
  • define, operationally, and compare and contrast scalar and vector quantities
  • explain, qualitatively and quantitatively, uniform and uniformly accelerated motion when provided with written descriptions and numerical and graphical data
  • interpret, quantitatively, the motion of one object relative to another, using displacement and velocity vectors
  • explain, quantitatively, two-dimensional motion in a horizontal or vertical plane, using vector components
  • identify common applications of kinematics
  • analyze free fall
  • investigate the application of kinematics principles
  • formulate questions about observed relationships and plan investigations of questions, ideas, problems and issues
  • conduct investigations into relationships among observable variables and use a broad range of tools and techniques to gather and record data and information
  • analyze data and apply mathematical and conceptual models to develop and assess possible solutions
  • work collaboratively in addressing problems and apply the skills and conventions of science in communicating information and ideas and in assessing results

Source: Alberta Education 

Kinematics Slide Presentations: