Archive for August, 2009

Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge

Here’s an opportunity for your students to get excited about next year’s Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge. The deadline has passed for this year’s competition, but the website allows you and your students to explore this year’s contestants and start to think about entering in 2010! As stated on the website, the basic goal of the program is as follows:

Do you have what it takes to be America’s Top Young Scientist? Discovery Education and 3M are looking for a few great students to inspire us with their enthusiasm for science, so show us what you’ve got! Create a short (1-2 min.) video about one of this year’s scientific topics and YOU could win a trip to New York City to compete in the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge finals.

In the Fun Science Extras section, you can find all sorts of teaching, experiment, and field trip resources!

Science: It’s A Girl Thing!

The Educational Equity Center just launched a new program called “Science: It’s A Girl Thing”. Basically it’s a program for caregivers to do with their young kids (geared towards ages 3-8) in order to encourage girls to get involved in STEM fields.

Links to short lesson plans and activities are on the Science: It’s A Girl Thing website. I see no reason why these couldn’t be used in the classroom with girls and boys!

Just for Fun: The Effects of Physics on Motorcross

I stumbled across this short article on The Onion. This line caught my attention in particular:

“I’ve had a great run in both professional motocross and Supercross, but the more I learn about kinetic energy, momentum, and ballistics, I’m beginning to think I’ve had a pretty good run of luck.”

*Note: The Onion is almost completely satire and to be taken with a grain of salt!

Chevy Volt

I’ve been seeing a lot of commercials for the Chevy Volt lately:

The one that plays on is only an animation of the number “230”, which is the estimated MPG for the Volt. I’ve been wondering how that’s possible, until I read a recent post by Dot Physics.

In “Chevy Voltology“, he goes into some detail about the specs of the Volt, as well as graphing the cars actual efficiency. You should check it out!

Other related posts are “The Law of Diminishing Returns, the Chevy Volt, gas milage, and hot air“, King of the Road writes a detailed evaluation of the Volt’s supposed efficiency and compares it to that of other small, fuel efficient cars.

On Good Math, Bad Math, author Matt writes a great post on how Chevy decided to use the “230 MPG” as part of their campaign and does the math to prove it. His post “The Chevy Volt gets 230 mpg? Only if you use bad math” was very clarifying!

This would be a great assignment for any physics class!

I Have A Dream…

…to teach in a school like this.

A place where administrators and teachers challenge parents and students to be involved.

A place where kids and their families decide to take the risk to defy social norms.

Mostly, I want to teach somewhere where teachers and students have a thirst for learning and goals are set high and achieved!

Two Atoms…

To see the whole joke, go here!

NASA Resources

NASA has many resources for teachers – the best two at the moment are a site just for educators and your chance to be a part of the committee to review NASA flight plans!