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    • #15347
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      Bring something that students relate to into your lab. Use computer car games to produce and explain speed-time graphs.

      Computer games magazines and students are cheap sources of car driving games.
      Demo games usually last 3-5 minutes and are ideal.
      You do need to see the speed displayed and most games will let you do that.
    • #15348
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      Plotting speed time graphs can be a little tedious;
      The ideal situation would be to take the class out in an exciting vehicle and race round in complete safety, noting times and speeds. Then they can plot a speed-time graph and find the area under the graph and hence the distance covered. Well car driving games like ‘Need for Speed’ will let you do just that and more.
      Use stopwatches and note the speed every 15 seconds while you race the car round and they watch on the data projector.
      See Physics Education September 2004
      Themes: Forces and motion

    • #15349
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand
    • #15350
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      Pre reading – The Need for Speed-time graphs

      Although this is a 16 page document there is little text and large graphics.


      It gives data on those sections of the population playing games in the USA in 2010.

      Do any of these figures surprise you?

    • #15351
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      Pre reading 2 – The Need for Speed-time graphs

      This paper outlines some of the connections between physics, computer games and physics education and reports on some small scale research:


      This paper contains references to several articles from the Computer Games issue of Physics Education.




    • #15352
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      Another activity that relates to motion graphs is Graph shots:


      Click on “Launch Graph Shots” at the bottom of the page.

      You might like to try this with a class, if you can’t you can still consider the following questions:

      1] How does this activity differ from the “Need for Speed-time graphs” activity?

      2] Are there any obvious drawbacks to using Graph shots?

    • #15353
      Profile photo of Andrew Normand

      This article is the basis for the idea as shown in the workshop:

      The need for speed: putting the thrill back into data collection

      Journal Physics Education  
      Issue Volume 39, Number 5

      Gary Williams 2004 Phys. Educ. 39 389 doi: 10.1088/0031-9120/39/5/F06

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