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eNNOUNCER June 2011                                          
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eNNOUNCER June 2011


2011 Summer Meeting in Omaha, NESM11Omaha

The 2011 AAPT Summer meeting will be held on the campus of Creighton University, July 30 - August 3, 2011. At this meeting we will focus on the art (possibly even the science?) of communicating physics outside the classroom.

Program Preview

Astronomy Workshop


Visit aapt.org for travel information and accommodations.


Pre-Conference Workshop
Communicating the Physics of Climate Change


Learn how to communicate the facts about climate change from one of the foremost experts,  James E. Hansen, Klopsteg Memorial Award recipient.


Little Shop of Physics


Learn about the hands-on, traveling, outreach program Little Shop of Physics from Program Director Brian Jones, Robert A. Millikan Medal recipient.


Summer 2011 Awards Information



Strategies to Help Women Succeed in Physics Related Professions


This workshop was specifically cited by a 2010 Summer attendee as having provided her the strategy that allowed her to negotiate at 6.4% increase in base pay for her first position after graduating with a BS in physics. Talk about taking your career to the next level!


Teaching Physics for the 1st or 50th Time


Physics Union Mathematics for Middle and High School




Don't Put That Phone Away: Personal Electronics in the Classroom


The Big Bang Effect: Representation of Physicists in Popular Culture


The Physics of Sports


Energy and the Environment


Educating the Larger Public about Science: Lessons from Public Institutions


Special Events


Cracker-Barrel—New Methods of Teacher Evaluation


Plenary—Jim Stith, Reaching Out to the Public - A Necessary Dialogue


Plenary—APS Division of Condensed Matter Physics: Frontiers of Nanoscience with Barbara Jones and Jeremy Levy


If you attended the Richtmeyer Lecture in Jacksonville you already saw some of Barbara Jones' amazing images of a quantum corral.


We Want You!


If you're a high school physics teacher who has never attended a meeting, we’ve prepared a special day for you on Tuesday, August 2nd. High School Physics Teacher Day for First-Time Attendees is only $75 for One-Day Registration. We’re confident that once you see what AAPT has to offer, you’ll become an active AAPT member.


Register now!       


High School Students Selected to Represent the U.S. Physics Team at the 2011 International Physics Olympiad

U.S. Physics TeamThe 2011 US Physics Team Travelers were announced as training camp came to an end. The team members who will represent the team in Bangkok, Thailand at the 42nd International Physics Olympiad are Lucy Chen, Andrew Das Sarma, Ante Qu, Eric Spieglan, and Brian Zhang with coaches Paul Stanley and Warren Turner. Read the press release.

Physics Day rollercoasterPhysics Day at Six Flags America 2011

On Friday, May 13, more than 6,000 middle and high school students descended on Six Flags America in Bowie, MD, for a day of thrilling rides and to learn more about amusement park physics. Regional SPS members along with AAPT, AIP, and APS staff engaged students with an egg drop competition, science demos, and accelerometers enclosed in vests that students could take on the rides. Check out our Physics Day Photo Gallery.

Outstanding High School Student Awards

AAPT members who teach high school physics can nominate their top three students for recognition with the Outstanding High School Student Award.  This program is for AAPT members only and requires member login. Access the award information.

High School Physics Teacher Grant

The grant(s) are given each year to teachers whose proposal meets the goal of the grant. That is, the procedure should result in better teaching practice, student understanding and interest, and/or increased enrollment. Also, the proposal should contain some innovative ideas. For example, the proposal may use a new teaching method or an adaptation of an existing idea. Proposal guidelines are online.

Application for Mini Grant to Support AAPT Section Sponsored New High School Physics Teacher Worshop(s)

The criteria for selection for an AAPT Sponsored New High School Physics Teacher Workshop(s) Mini Grant includes:  Section's strategies to recruit teachers (minimum of 12 teachers needed).  Section's plans to communicate with the local schools,  Section's plans to engage teachers in their section activities,  Section's commitment to continue with future workshops and seek funding for those workshops. Preference will be given to a section that can raise additional funds to support workshop(s) and provide at least two six-hour workshops.  Guidelines and application are online. Guidelines and application are online.

Call for Nominations for AAPT Awards


The Awards Committee is seeking nominations for the Oersted Medal, the Richtmyer Memorial Lecture Award, the Melba Newell Phillips Medal, the J. D. Jackson Award for Excellence in Graduate Physics Teaching, and the AAPT Distinguished Service Citation.  All AAPT members are urged to review the descriptions of these awards on the AAPT website and then, following instructions available at a link on that website, to nominate individuals deemed worthy of consideration for any of these awards.


APS Presents PTRA with Excellence in Physics Education Award


At the APS Spring Meeting, PTRA leaders were presented the 2011 Excellence in Physics Education Award "For providing peer-led professional development for 25 years to more than 5000 physics and physical science teachers nationwide through a network of more than 500 master teachers."




Pictured above are PTRA presenters  Karen Jo Matsler, Jim Nelson and George Amann. Read online


ComPADRE Turns 8


It was in late spring of 2003 that the ComPADRE web site first went live. ComPADREThis NSF-funded digital library project was created to expand the AAPT's Physical Sciences Resource Center,provide the library and technical structure to foster collaborations, and build community-based collections supporting all aspects of physics education.With the help of the AAPT, APS, SPS, AIP, and AAS, ComPADRE now serves about a million visitors each month and holds resources ranging from high school mentoring to advanced physics laboratories, and from physics career information to the Physics Education Research Conference. A recent survey showed that our visitors are successful in their use of ComPADRE, but we are always looking to improve. With the NSF National STEM Digital Library program ending, we are looking to maintain our current successes and for new opportunities to collaborate and grow. Your comments and ideas are always welcome.


eMentoring logo


Are You a New Physics Teacher? Could You Use a Little Help?       


The AAPT ementoring program is designed to connect pre-college physics educators in need of additional guidance with experienced pre-college  physics educators. Learn more.


Advancing Girls in STEM Symposium


There is so much talk about helping girls move forward in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) subjects that you may wonder: "Is there more we could be doing?" The answer is YES. NCGS Symposium


On June 21st, 2011 at Wellesley College, the National Coalition of Girls' Schools will host “Advancing Girls in STEM: An NCGS STEM Symposium,” an event for K-12 educators that will highlight nationally-renowned speakers, present original research, and share innovative ways to engage and retain girls in the STEM fields. Visit the Symposium agenda to view the full list. Register here


ASU Modeling Workshops in Physics, Chemistry, and Physical Science


Six 3-week Modeling Workshops (June 13-July 1, July 5-22) for high  school physics, chemistry, and physical science teachers nationwide  are offered by Arizona State University in Tempe. Read online


Modeling Workshops Nationwide


Modeling Workshops for high school physics, chemistry, and physical  science teachers will be offered in summer 2011 at 28 sites in 20  states. Read online


Last Workshop in the Series of Active Learning with Video Analysis


June 20-24, 2011, at Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY.
The LivePhoto Physics project is offering the last NSF-funded 5-day workshop in the current series for university and college faculty interested in using digital video analysis in student research, lectures, tutorials, homework assignments, and laboratories. The workshop will cover both normal and high-speed capture and analysis techniques in mechanics, thermal physics, wave propagation, electricity, magnetism, and optics. Learn more.


Advanced Placement Summer Institute


The University of Georgia is hosting a College Board-endorsed Advanced Placement Summer Institute on June 20-24, 2011. AP Summer Institutes offer 30-plus hours of subject-specific professional development for AP teachers. Seats are still available for AP Physics B/C (combined). The course will provide an overview of AP Physics, teaching methods, syllabi and plans, and participants will have the chance to network with their peers to learn best practices from them. Learn how to participate.


Summer Workshops and Science Experiments from Vernier


Put a little spring into your teaching this May by checking out Vernier's featured labs. Also, join Vernier this summer for one of their hands-on workshops to learn how to integrate  data-collection technology into your science curriculum.  Be sure to apply for one of  thirty $10,000 grants  offered to celebrate Vernier's 30th anniversary! Read online


PASCO logoSPARKscience Online  Boot Camp!


Join our trainers live online for interactive training to:

  • Become a confident user of the SPARKscience Learning System or SPARKvue software
  • Understand the variety of probeware experiments available in your subject area
  • Prepare to implement a probeware activity in your classroom

Check online for dates and times.


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Note on External Links


Links to non-AAPT sites are intended as a service to readers interested in AAPT, physics, and education. These links do not reflect an endorsement of any content or product. Also, due to the evolving nature of websites, some external links referenced in the eNNOUNCER may expire over time.


Thanks for your readership and your support of AAPT.


Copyright © 2011, American Association of Physics Teachers


In this issue


Featured Journal Articles


The Physics Teacher


Equations as Guides to Thinking and Problem Solving. Read online


American Journal of Physics


Corked bats, juiced balls, and humidors: The Physics of cheating in baseball. Read online


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Members in the News


Kristen Ann Record , a physics teacher at Bunnell High School in Stratford, CT, was honored at the White House May 3rd, 2011 as Connecticut's teacher of the year. Read online


Study: It's not teacher, but method that matters
A study by Nobel Prize-winning physicist Carl Wieman, now a science adviser to President Barack Obama, suggests that how you teach is more important than who does the teaching. Read online


Margaret Piper  will participate in NASA's SOFIA project!  Read online


After 44 years
of being a fixture at Webster Groves High School, the legendary Philip J. Wojak is retiring - sort of. Read online


Jan Mader's
Great Falls High School students walk on water. Read online


Physics Store Features


Einstein Starry Night T-Shirt


Role of the Lab in Teaching Introductory Physics


Members $10.00




Float Your Boat! The Evolution and Science of Sailing


Role of the Lab in Teaching Introductory Physics


Members $18.50 34% off
                              non-member price