A. Grace Martin

Author, Student Teacher, Optimist and Promoter of Self-Empowerment

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PS2 Practicum Log Monday March 9, 2015

Posted by agracemartin on March 10, 2015 at 11:45 AM

Today was my first day of teaching a class of Science 14 and 10-4 (K & E) students. We introduced the flow of heat energy from hot to cold objects and the three ways in which thermal energy transfers: convection, conduction, and radiation.

Since this is my first lesson with this class, I will (almost) arbitrarily assign its' success as an 8 out of 10. This will be my reference point for reflections over this first week of classes.

I modified my lesson plan while teaching to accommodate the interests of my students. I noticed that the energy transfer story was not hitting home, so instead I brought out my Newton’s cradle and slinky to demonstrate mechanical energy transfer as an analogy for heat energy transfer and conservation of energy.

I think that sitting in a circle was very beneficial for establishing an informal environment. The Science 14s are mature enough to handle conversations with give-and-take commentary. I think the structure included everyone, keeping them accountable to the same conversation. I found this especially useful because usually the class splits into two groups at the back of the room, which could potentially make class discussions feel disjointed. Pushing the desks aside and arranging the chairs in a central circle also freed up enough space to do our kinesthetic activities.

1. Convection: We modeled convection as water particles that had to stay within a pot (an enclosure of chairs). As the bottom particles warmed up, they rose to the top, meaning that a student would walk up the middle of the space, then cycle back down again after cooling. As the "water" got hotter, two particles left the top of the pot to become water vapor. Two people bubbling out of the pot and circulating above it then modeled air convection currents.

2. Conduction: Students stood in a line and modeled energy transfer through direct contact by giving high-fives down the line.

3. Radiation: We then sat back down and did the “wave” to role-play heat energy radiating away from a source without direct contact.

I think that taking notes of each concept’s definition was also important. I only had one slide for notes, but noticed that in my formative assessment of a quick quiz, or exit slip, that convection and conduction were not easily remembered. Therefore, we will review the difference between the two concepts in our next class.


Categories: PSII Reflection Journal/Log

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