Saturday, July 2, 2022

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Physics, Gunpowder, and Lead

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Ask any of the juniors who are in a physics class about what they have done in the past few weeks and they will probably respond with something about creating a film that illustrates Newton’s “Three Laws of Motion.”

Within the short film, students were required to provide explanations and examples of at least two of Newton’s laws. According to physics teacher Ms. Tiffani Tran, “The reason why we had the guys do a Newton’s law project was to give everybody a chance to demonstrate the principles they already see and do everyday. It is different when you can look at how something works and then proceed to use appropriate language to describe how it all happens. I think working together with a team gets the guys excited about what they are about to learn in the unit before diving into all of the math behind the concepts.”

All of the students were encouraged to be creative with their examples and movies. Junior Tim Paluck and I were no exception; we did a project about the laws of motion, but we used some materials that have not been used before in any physics video: firearms.

When Tim and I heard about the project, Newton’s third law (every action has an equal and opposite reaction) popped into both of our heads, because this law applies when shooting a firearm. After receiving approval from Principal Michael Earsing, we began planning and later set out to accomplish our goal. We thought about how guns would demonstrate each of the three laws and whether or not we would be able to demonstrate each law properly. After viewing the video, Earsing said, “I love how you guys mixed science and the outdoors, because I am a fan of the outdoors.” This video became an instant hit with both our class and Mr. Earsing, who later exclaimed, “That project was right on target!” Enjoy watching our project.