March 2017 issue of The Physics Teacher


Volume 55 Issue 3, March 2017


The Physics Teacher

This month's cover features Mercury's silhouette against a roiling backdrop of Texas-sized convection cells on the surface of the Sun. The brighter regions indicate an upflow of hotter gas revealing an effect known as solar granulation. The original image is monochromatic (the reddish 705.7 nm TiO spectral line); the ghostly ring around the planet is an artifact of the adaptive-optics system (see Using the 2016 Transit of Mercury to Find the Distance to the Sun).





And the Survey Says..., Figuring Physics, iPhysicsLabs, Little Gems, Astronotes, Physics Challenge for Teachers and Students, Fermi Questions, Visual Physics, and Websights.

Letters to the Editor

More ideas for projecting a rainbow by Dave Van Domelen. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976649
Circular motion redux by Carlos H. Wörner. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976650


Statcast and the Baseball Trajectory Calculator by David Kagan, and Alan M. Nathan. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976652

Using the 2016 Transit of Mercury to Find the Distance to the Sun by Jay M. Pasachoff, Bernd Gährken, and Glenn Schneider. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976653

Is an Apple Magnetic: Magnetic Response of Everyday Materials Supporting Views About the Nature of Science by Daniel Laumann. DOI 10.1119/1.4976654

By Hook or by MOOC: Lessons Learned and the Road Ahead by Boris Korsunsky, and Clara Li. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976655

3, 2, 1 … Discovering Newton’s Laws by Joe Lutz, Kevin Sylvester, Keith Oliver, and Deborah Herrington. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976656

Conceptualizing Rolling Motion Through an Extreme Case Reasoning Approach by Elvedin Hasović, Vanes Mešić, and Nataša Erceg. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976657

Field Day at the Rec: Working Out with Physics by Chadwick Young, Kaisa Young, Gavin Buxton, and Armand Buzzelli. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976658

A Student-Centered, Inquiry-Based Approach to Young’s Double-Slit Experiment (and Other Investigations of Light’s Wave Character) by Daniel Z. Meyer. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976659

An Easy Way to One-Dimensional Elastic Collisions by Jorge Sztrajman, and Alejandro Sztrajman. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976660

Transition Matrices: A Tool to Assess Student Learning and Improve Instruction by Gary A. Morris, Paul Walter, Spencer Skees, and Samantha Schwartz. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976661

A Student View of Experimental Physics by Frank Bu, Robert Lloyd Marlowe, and Kristin Whitson. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976662

Significant Figures in Measurements with Uncertainty: A Working Criterion by Abraham Vilchis. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976663

Engaging Students in a Large-Enrollment Physics Class Using an Academically Focused Social Media Platform by Andy Gavrin, and Rebecca Lindell. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976664

Entropic Damping of the Motion of a Piston by Carl E. Mungan. DOI: 10.1119/1.4976666

Additional Resources

DNA Science TPT Element

DNA Science Lesson & Digi-Kit

Inspired by an article from The Physics Teacher, this multidisciplinary lesson and digital resource collection is based on How Rosalind Franklin Discovered the Helical Structure of DNA: Experiments in Diffraction (Braun, Tierney, & Schmitzer, 2011). Click the image to access this resource.


Article Collections from TPT and AJP    


TPT Presents: Columns and other Collections from The Physics Teacher