This page last changed on Jun 01, 2009 by kbell.

Kimberle, Paul A. 3/18/09

Draft of Motion Curriculum for CA Classroom Trials

Motion Activities:
1. Pre-test
2. Position inquiry
3. Position stories
4. Velocity inquiry
5. Velocity stories
6. Post-test

Activities 2 through 4 can viewed at
as fm-1-activity through fm-4-activity.

Activity 1: Pre-test
<under construction>

Activity 2: Working with Position Graphs

1: Focus for this activity
Tell the students what they'll be doing: using motion probes to study a simple model of a train system and learning about graphing and how to describe motion.

2. Prediction
Have the students predict position vs time graph for train trip from stations A to B and back to A.
LOOPS: Students submit graphs, but they are only visible to the teacher (so that students can feel free to guess something if they don't what to expect)

3. Reference points
Introduce the idea of an origin.

4. Demonstration
Teacher demonstrates use of the probe, showing on the projected screen how to walk in front of the motion probe and see where the zero position is. (Note: We have modified the software to allow for a zero position at any distance from the probe. For this activity, the zero position/origin is set 2 meters in front of the probe.)

Do we mention negative position at this point? The graph Y axis currently is only positive; in wandering around, the students may encounter negative positions, and the graphs will just show a gap where the positions are off the scale. The idea of negative position will be useful when discussing velocity and direction in Activity 4. If it's not mentioned here, the students could be led to discover it. In either case, in Activity 4 the teacher would be able to remind students about positive and negative directions with respect to the origin.

5. Finding the origin
Students walk in front of the motion probe to find the origin.
Students may encounter negative positions, which will be off the scale. (The dozen students who have tried this activity so far have not been bothered by this phenomenon; we'll try it again on Friday with 20 more.)
LOOPS: POLLING on multiple choice question about origin location; histogram is shared with students and teacher.

6. Students play with motion probes
Students walk between A and B and use motion probe to produce position vs time graphs. The graphs will show position between 0 and 2 meters from the origin (at A).
LOOPS: POLLING for multiple choice question about what happens on the graph; histogram shared
Students answer other questions about what the graph looks like at various positions. Do we want the students to submit these for the teacher to see?

7. Student train trip
Students walk between A and B and use motion probe to produce position vs time graph of A-B-A trip.
Students submit graphs; LOOPS: FLAG-N, teacher chooses some for students to view.
Do we want a hold here so that students can't proceed until teacher says ok?

8 Discussing class graphs
VIEW FLAG-N choices: Are graphs projected on screen or on students' next pages (or both)?
Teacher asks questions about how graphs are similar and different; students identify strategies for matching graphs

9. Follow-up: Matching a graph
Students employ the strategies they identified in step 8 to match a graph. (At some point we'll add the option of having the teacher be able to FLAG-1 graph for the students to use as the target graph; for now, we'll supply one.)
Students submit graphs; LOOPS: FLAG-N, teacher chooses some for students to view.
Do we want a hold here so that students can't proceed until teacher says ok?

10. Discuss matching graphs
What are good questions for this step? (At the moment, we've included questions similar to step 8.)

11: Wrap-up
Show each student the three graphs that he or she has made: prediction, their train trip, their matched graph,
Should all the data sets be on the same graph? An alternative would be to have separate graphs.

Notes to author

Activity 3: Interpreting Graphs

We need to add LOOPS positions to this activity.

1. Focus
Tell students they'll be exploring the relationship between graphs and stories.

2. Reading another graph
Provide a story and have students label regions.

3. A race graph
Provide a story and have students draw a graph.
We need to change the data set labels from "Data Graph".

4. Creating a story
Provide a labeled graph and have students create a story.
(One student asked is she could change the graph: Pro: students can be creative and teacher can show a variety of graphs and stories; Con: teacher has to analyze graphs in real-time to see if they match the accompanying stories.)

Notes to author

Activity 4: Working with Velocity Graphs
This activity is structured as Activity 2, which focuses on position graphs. Producing velocity graphs is a new feature of the software.

We need to add LOOPS positions to this activity.

1. Focus
The question about familiarity with negative numbers gives teacher a sense for what students know; it also gets students thinking about negative numbers in preparation for discussion of change in direction and negative velocity..
LOOPS: submit for teacher to look at results, but not share
(The students who have tried this activity so far have have varying degrees of comfort with negative numbers.)

2. Prediction
Students predict velocity vs time graph. Y axis is centered on zero.
LOOPS: Students submit, but not share (so they can feel free to predict anything).

3. Demonstration
Teacher demonstrates use of motion probe to create velocity vs. time graphs.
Do we need the question about what the students see (which is a repeat of position question)?

4. Students use motion probes
Students play with the probes and answer qestions about velocity at various positions,e.g., at Station A.

5: Student train trip
Should we mention that real data is noisy, as illustrated by the bumps in the velocity graph?
Students submit graphs.

6. Discussing class graphs
Are there other questions to ask here? e.g., "How did match up with prediction?"

7. Velocity and position graphs
Show the students their velocity graph and a matching position graph (or their position graph from Activity 2 and a matching velocity graph). Ask them to answer questions while looking at both graphs.
(Note: At the moment, the graphs are not derived from the same data set; this functionality will be available soon.)

8. Wrap-up
What sorts of questions should go here?

9. Summary
Is summarizing useful here?

Activity 5: Velocity Stories
<under construction>

This activity is structured as Activity 3, which focuses on position graphs:
. provide story, students label regions
. provide story, students draw graph
. provide labeled graph, students create story

The beach story shown at show&tell, and available here is an example:
We would shorten the story and at some point replace some of the text with cartoon-like drawings.

<later: need local save for when run without internet>

motion-activity-notes-3-18.rtf (application/octet-stream)
Document generated by Confluence on Jan 27, 2014 16:42