Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Take out your phones! (BYOD in action)

Yes, my first words today in AP chemistry.

"Please, take out your phones."

"Find the 19-second video on the railroad car implosion and watch it."

Which, of course, my students easily did.

It was SO much easier than setting up my computer, connecting to the projector, and finding the video myself. Within 5 minutes, everyone had watched the video over and over, and had marveled at the speed at which the railroad car imploded.  

We then had a classroom discussion about how and why this event happened. 

We discussed atmospheric pressure and how big a number 1.0 atm actually is. This is when I use 14.7 pounds per square inch to put atmospheric pressure in perspective. I tell them if I had gained an extra 15 pounds during Christmas break, it would be pretty obvious that I had enjoyed a lot of cookies over break!  But that pressure is the amount of force on every single inch of their body, all the time. Students start to understand that we are swimming in an ocean of air particles. 

With guidance, each class explained why the tanker car was crushed. I then performed the can-crushing demo in class. Even at the super slow motion available on phones now, the can implodes amazingly fast.

It was a great day in class today.