Weeks of December 19, 2016 and January 2, 2017

This entry covers the entire rest of the semester except for exam week. Please be sure to check PowerSchool for any missing assignments.

These Weeks in Physics
We are a smidge behind last week’s plans due to the snow day on Thursday (squee!) Therefore on the day after your class finishes assignment 1, you will have a quiz over learning goal set 1. Also due on that day are the notes from Podcast 2: Work-Energy Theorem. We will then do  assignment  2 together in calss. On the day after your class finishes that assignment, you will have a quiz over learning goal set 2. Also due on that day are the notes from Podcast 3: Conservation of Mechanical Energy. This will lead us up to exam week. NOTE ON THE MID-TERM EXAM: It is comprehensive and will cover all material from units 1-4. Your learning goal packets are your study guides. If you’ve lost your goal packets, you can find them posted at the top of each unit webpage. Suggestion: Start reviewing a little – just a little – now. You’ll thank yourself later. 🙂

Cool Science of These Weeks
Coming out on January 6 is a new movie called Hidden Figures (Rotten Tomatoes 95% score) that tells the amazing story of three African-American women mathematicians who were pivotal in launching John Glenn on his historic mission to orbit the globe, catching the U.S. up in the space race with the Soviet Union in the 1960s and thrilling the nation. The story has historical twists in that the women worked in a segregated part of NASA and received virtually no recognition until this fall when the movie (and the book upon which it’s based) started getting recognition – including Oscar buzz! (See last week’s Science of the Week for information on John Glenn.)

Week of December 12, 2016

This Week in Physics
For Monday please take notes on unit 4 Podcast 1: Introduction to Mechanical Energy. We will go over this in class and will do unit 4 assignment 1 together. On the day after we finish that assignment we will quiz over learning goal set 1. Also due on that day are the notes from Podcast 2: Work-Energy TheoremWe will go over this in class and will do unit 4 assignment  2 together.

Sad Science of the Week
This past Thursday, December 8, America & Ohio lost one of our great heroes when John Glenn passed away at the age of 95. Senator Glenn served in the U.S. Senate for twenty-four years (1974-1998) but first rose to prominence as a pioneer in space exploration in the 1960s. At 9:47 a.m. on February 20, 1962 Mr. Glenn launched into outer space and orbited Earth three times, making him the first American to orbit the globe. On October 29, 1998 Mr. Glenn boarded the space shuttle Discovery at the age of 77, making him the oldest person to explore outer space. Before his time as an astronaut and public servant, he flew combat missions in the Pacific during WWII. Through it all his associates noted his humble and generous nature. America has lost a true hero. Let’s remember him.

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Senator Glenn in 1998 

Week of December 5, 2016

There are only 2.6 weeks until winter break. After winter break there are just five days before exams. Time is flying, so be sure to check PowerSchool and keep on top of your work so that you can finish the semester like a champion!

This Week in Physics
On Monday we will continue to debrief PODCAST 5: Newton’s Laws of Motion – Second Law and will then complete an activity and assignment 5 together followed by a quiz as announced. (Note: 8th period, this podcast is due on Monday.) When announced please take notes on  PODCAST 6: Newton’s Laws of Motion – Third Law and will then complete an activity and assignment 6 together followed by the unit 3 test.
Friction lab report: Your lab report for the friction lab will be due on Friday, December 9. A hard copy is due at the start of class, and an upload to TurnItIn.com is due by 3:00 on that day. Use our writing guides to organize and create your reports properly: Lab Report Writing Guide and Lab Report Rubric. As always, you must write while logged onto you Google account on a shared Google Drive document. You must share your document with me as an editor. Use this email address: burgessm@alstudent.org. Note: Here are instructions for inserting the screenshot of the graph properly. 🙂 

Hot Science of the Week
There is much debate right now as our government shifts to a new administration about whether climate change is real or a hoax. The graph below from NASA shows greenhouse gas levels over the last 400,000 years. Rising ocean levels, acidification of our water supply, and extreme weather are among the consequences scientists say we’ll face due to climate change. In the Midwest, NASA predicts “Extreme heat, heavy downpours and flooding will affect infrastructure, health, agriculture, forestry, transportation, air and water quality, and more. Climate change will also exacerbate a range of risks to the Great Lakes [water supply.]” Geologists and environmental experts are considering renaming our current epoch the “antrhopocene” (anthro meaning human), calling this an era during which humans are the main cause of changes to Earth and its species. Are we? There’s buzz that in the coming administration NASA will lose much of its funding for climate change research, eliminating or seriously reducing funding for the satellites scientists use to monitor Earth’s climate. Politicians who believe that climate change is a hoax criticize it as “politicized science” and want to reduce environmental regulations in order to promote business growth. It’s a complex issue. What do you think?
This graph, based on the comparison of atmospheric samples contained in ice cores and more recent direct measurements, provides evidence that atmospheric CO2 has increased since the Industrial Revolution. (Source: [[LINK||http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/icecore/||NOAA]])