program_wb_i - page 151

July 26–30, 2014
Wednesday afternoon
Nicole Strickhouser, Jefferson High School
Andrew Hirsch, Daniel Shepardson, Devdutta Niyogi, Purdue University
Students develop their mental models from their everyday experiences. It
is likely that middle and high school students have developed their mental
models of abstract concepts like greenhouse effect and climate change from
frequent talks on these topics in the media. Student mental models are
personal and are often different from the conceptual models constructed
by scientists and the general goal of teaching is to assist students to modify
their personal models into the scientific ones. This process is far from a
replacement of one by the other; it is a slow process of construction. We
will present our iterative findings from the ways student models guided our
lessons and how they changed after instruction on greenhouse effect and
climate change.
PST2G15: 1-1:45 p.m. SciPlay’s Physics Noticing Tool (PNT):
Designing for Real Middle School Classrooms
Poster – Laura Rodriguez-Costacamps, New York Hall of Science, 47-01
111th St., Queens, NY 11368;
Victoria Winters, Harouna Ba, Alyssa December, Talya Wolf, New York Hall
of Science
The New York Hall of Science’s SciPlay department creates and researches
technologies and curricular approaches that leverage children’s natural
playfulness for scientific inquiry and engagement. We recognize the chal-
lenge of successfully and simultaneously fostering playfulness and physics
learning in the middle school classroom, and are developing a Physics
Noticing Tool (PNT) in an effort to support teachers in this endeavor. The
PNT is a digital app that allows students to document their own play-
ground activities and investigate the energy, force, and motion involved in
their performances. We will discuss how the app design accommodates the
messiness of real playground physics, how the accompanying curricular
scaffolding addresses the challenges of classroom management, and how
the technology and facilitation together can support collaborative class-
room investigations of rich and relevant physics.
PST2G16: 1:45-2:30 p.m. Projectile Motion In-class Activity
Using Landmarks and Online Map Data
Poster – Kenneth M. Purcell, University of Southern Indiana, Evansville, IN
Projectile motion is the primary means of discussing two-dimensional
kinematics under constant acceleration and is one of the first core concepts
encountered by students in an introductory physics course that allows
them to develop their problem solving skills. We will discuss a projectile
motion activity challenge that we have introduced to keep the interest of
the students peaked during the in-class problem solving. Students are bro-
ken up into teams and choose a location from a list of chosen landmarks/
locations in Evansville, IN. Each team has three “guns” at their base: a
fixed angle and adjustable velocity cannon, a fixed velocity and adjustable
angle cannon, and a cannon with fixed angle and velocity but an adjustable
height. We will also discuss how data from online map sources can be used
to obtain accurate distances between preselected landmarks of the instruc-
tors choosing.
PST2G17: 1-1:45 p.m. MyTech: Using Smartphones in Physics
Poster – Colleen B. Lanz, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Michael A. Paesler, William R. Sams, North Carolina State University
The common use of “black boxes” in physics laboratories impedes students’
learning of the topics at hand and the high cost of the equipment often
prohibits universities from being able to provide a laboratory experience to
their students. We believe that the use of unfamiliar equipment encoun-
tered in the laboratory places a pedagogical barrier between students and
their educational gains. By using their own familiar electronic devices,
students not only gain access to all of the necessary sensors for data
collection, but the connection between their school lives and personal
lives strengthens. In response to this desire to integrate smartphones into
laboratories, we have developed a suite of experiments and apps featuring
the use of students’ own equipment in data collection and analysis. We will
Raj Surabhi, Arjun Tan, Alabama A&M University
Fermat’s principle represents a unification of the laws of geometrical optics,
namely, the laws of rectilinear propagation, reflection, and refraction.
Apparent violations of Fermat’s principle have been widely publicized in
reflection of light inside ellipsoidal mirrors. This study explores the viola-
tion of Fermat’s principle in refraction. The surface of separation of the two
media is found to be an oval, whose parametric equation is obtained. The
part of the oval on which actual refraction could take place is determined.
If the oval at any point is replaced by a convex surface having a curvature
greater than that of the oval, then the optical path is shown to be maxi-
mum. However, since the laws of reflection or refraction are valid at points
where the surfaces are locally flat, Fermat’s principle of minimum optical
path is also obeyed at those same points.
PST2G11: 1-1:45 p.m. A Program for STEM Scholarship Recipi-
ents in Physics, Math, Computer Science, and
Poster – Mary L. Lowe, Loyola University Maryland, Physics Department,
Baltimore, MD 21210;
Mili Shah, Roberta Sabin, Loyola University Maryland
This poster will focus on the activities at Loyola University Maryland as-
sociated with an NSF grant to provide scholarships to STEM undergradu-
ates attending the university from 2007-2012. The poster will describe
issues with implementing such a grant: recruitment and selection of
students, financial considerations, students’ progress through the program,
mentoring, research and outreach activities of the recipients, supplemental
courses, and retention. Alumni information is now becoming available.
Outcomes of physics students who received scholarships will be presented.
PST2G12: 1:45-2:30 p.m. We Share Solar – A STEM Program to
Build a Solar Suitcase
Poster – Tiberiu Dragoiu Luca, 176 Edgerstoune Rd., Princeton, NJ 08540-
We Share Solar is a STEM education program, which uses the building of
a We Share Solar Suitcase (a 12V DC Stand-Alone Solar Power System) as
a learning platform for solar technology. It is a program that is offered by
the parent organization We Care Solar (CNN Hero). The We Share Solar
kit (also referring to as Solar Suitcase) was developed to allow teachers to
easily have all the necessary parts to build a solar electric system, and to
provide a supportive educational program with enriching curriculum in
solar energy literacy. In this short talk I will present the implementation of
this program at my school.
PST2G13: 1-1:45 p.m. Interaction of Negative Ions with X-Rays
Poster – Ileana Dumitriu, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, 10 St. Clair St.,
Geneva, NY 14456;
Candace Carducci, Joshua Moss, Hobart and William Smith Colleges
Clusters are the bridge between gas phase and solid phase and have been
studied using mostly laser techniques. Investigation of cluster negative ions
using synchrotron radiation is a novel direction. Studies of ionic clusters
allow us to understand the complex behavior of bulk materials. The experi-
ment was performed at Lawrence National Berkeley Laboratory, Berkeley,
CA. The negative small carbon clusters Cn ¯ (n = 1,?,10) were produced
by a cesium sputter source SNICS. The negative ion beam and counter
propagating photon beam overlap in the interaction region. Inner-shell
photodetachment from negative ions followed by Auger decay produce
positive ions that are detected as a function of photon energy. The inner-
shell photodetachment cross section of small carbon clusters was measured
in the photon energy range of 25 -90 eV. The poster presents experimental
results on the size evolution of the electronic properties of the small Cn ¯
(n = 1,?,10) clusters.
PST2G14: 1:45-2:30 p.m. Student Mental Model as a Guide to
Poster – Anita Roychoudhury, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907-
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