Resources for Physics Teachers

Perhaps the most important resource for physics teachers is...another physics teacher. Or, better yet, many other physics teachers! Consequently, remaining connected to the community of physics teachers in Michigan can be of great help in developing lessons, demonstrations, lectures, courses, etc.

General web-based resources follow:

  • DMAPT - The Detroit Metropolitan Area Physics Teachers
  • Physics Central - Physics Central
  • AAPT - American Association of Physics Teachers
  • APS - American Physical Society
  • AIP - American Institute of Physics
  • SPS - Society of Physics Students
  • NSTA - National Science Teachers Association
  • MDSTA - Metropolitan Detroit Science Teachers Association
  • MESTA - Michigan Earth Science Teachers Association
  • MSTA - Michigan Science Teachers Association
  • MI Ed - Michigan Department of Education
  • Michigan HSCE - Michigan High School Content Expectations (pdf file)
  • HSCE Companion DocumentsThese assist teachers in their understanding of the new high school content expectations and guide assessment. Each discipline is subdivided into 12 Units of Instruction.

Member-submitted specific resources follow:

  • Hope College - Creative Science Initiative (CSI)   Look for links to spreadsheets to filter/sort through available resources by content expectation - for a physics outreach program!
  • ComPADRE - If you haven't seen this you need to. Just make sure you give yourself plenty of time. There's a lot here.
  • Open Source Physics - Out of the November-2008 Physics Teacher. Open Source Physics has a collection of tools for computational physics. The first piece to catch my attention first was the Tracker program. This is a java based video analysis tool. It also includes the ability to mathematically model motion. You can overlay the model right on the video. So you could model a perfect projectile path and show how an NBA player seems to float when they dunk a ball.
  • New Kind of College - This is an article from American Radio Works on changing the approach to teaching.
  • MIT OCW - I'm sure by now everyone has heard of MIT's OpenCourseWare project. They are putting lots of their course materials online for free. Of particular interest are the classes that have the full lectures online in video format. Coulde be very useful for both new and old teachers looking to brush up a little.
  • PhET Simulations - This is a great set of simulations developed out of the University of Colorado in Boulder. These can be used for student labs or when you need a quick demonstration. For more read an article about them from the Physics Teacher (pdf).
  • 60 Symbols - By the same folks that brought us the Periodic Table of Videos. This series looks at 60 symbols/ideas in Physics and Astronomy. They are very high quality and informative.
  • Websights from the Physics Teacher - In every issue of thePhysics Teacher they highlight a handful of websights that would be useful to physics teachers. Here you will find links to them.