Sample Assessment

21 This is today’s assessment. You may recognize the graphs on page 1 from some of the mechanics Modeling Instruction materials available on the AMTA website. But I changed the question to fit my intent.

This student did a great job. Some students are still completely clueless. So we have some more work to do. I want to have an archive of practice problems for those kids who really need a lot of practice to get some things right. A lot of practice to build up enough myelin so that they can read a description of motion and make a position vs. time graph. If you look at the second page, I had a lot of kids who could draw the correct shape of the graph, and most of them even started the graph at the point (0s, 5m), but very few were able to put correct slopes in. So, more practice!

 

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How do you…

20 I actually took this photo so I would remember the questions from class to class, but it is just as well to use it here. Today the conceptual classes were working on how to go from one kind of representation to another. Notice that motion maps are missing. I decided not to use them this year and just focus on the graphs. I think it is helping my kids to have fewer things to focus on (in comparison to previous years).

In addition, we played the mistake game I mentioned yesterday. I asked the kids to look carefully at each velocity vs. time graph on a whiteboard and raise a hand when the spotted a mistake. It worked great in my 1st period class, with two distinct types of mistakes being made and good discussion on how to avoid them. But 5th period did not go so well, with a couple of kids who had missed class time and students who wanted to make the mistake a missing title or axis label. However, by then I realized I could use my iPad seating chart to record who had their hand up when, and now I have a record of the formative assessment. I keep each class’s seating chart in a separate Notability document, and I copy it and paste it when it gets all marked up and I need another. I will try to remember to write a longer post on my reflections blog to describe more fully how I use it.

 

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Connections

 

19 Today we started making the big connections (actually we did this yesterday with one class) between position vs. time graphs and velocity vs. time graphs. We got predictions for velocity vs. time graphs first, sharing them on the board at the front of the room, and then we used the motion detector to see  which (if any) of the predictions were right. Then with this one, which was the last one, I used the tools in Logger Pro to get points on my position vs. time graph and students calculated the slopes. Then I used Logger Pro to get the average velocities from the velocity graph, and the values were pretty similar to the slopes. Being able to do this and annotate it without having to walk back and forth between the board and the computer is one actual good use of the Promethean ActivBoard in my classroom. Finally, we applied the slope = velocity to draw a variety of velocity vs time graphs for a variety of position vs. time graphs. Sometimes practice is a very good thing! Tomorrow it will be “Mistake Game” time with the velocity graphs and then we can move on to using graphs to answer questions!

 

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Notes

18 OK so this is a little lame. I had an awesome day today, using ultrasonic motion sensors with the conceptual classes to match position vs. time graphs and discover what the velocity vs. time graphs look like. But I did not get any photos or videos of it happening, because I was hopping all around the classroom working with each group and making sure the graphs were set up correctly and fixing it when the velocity vs. time graph suddenly had a scale of -50 to 50 m/s when -2 to 2 m/s was much more appropriate. I had a good time, and I think students are starting to get it. This is in addition to the Super Ultimate Graphing Challenge that I had the kids do over the weekend, which helped some kids a lot with the position vs. time graphs.

Anyway, the photo above is one student’s notes from the motion sensor activity, which accidentally got left behind in class. Sigh. Maybe tomorrow there will be something more exciting.

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