Our Physics Homeschool Curriculum about the physics of waves runs from January 26 to May 11, 2023. It meets live online on Zoom weekly at 10:05 AM PST / 1:05 PM EST on Thursdays for the Spring 2023 (Jan-May) term.
Our Physics Homeschool Curriculum Part 2: Waves is a continuation of Intro to Physics (Part 1). Unless you already have some physics background, we suggest taking that course first before moving on to Physics Part 2.
Physics Part 2: Waves has an entirely new set of 5 topics relating to conceptual physics for homeschool covering waves and flow. We’ll be discussing a lot about how liquids and gasses move, and how moving solids might not be as solid as you think! We’ll investigate the physics of lots of common, everyday examples like flowing water, springs, heat, light, electromagnetic radiation (EM waves), the weather, and, of course, ocean waves and tides.
Videos Included: The video solutions for the worksheets include 25 videos (2.5 hours total).
Materials Included: The course has 12 printable pdf files including worksheets, answer keys and class notes.
Time commitment: Learners typically spend 1.5-2.5 hours per week, which includes combined live in-class time and out-of-class time.
Course duration: Semester length (half school year) or summer session.
Instructor Support Included: Dr. Scott teaches the live class personally. He is available for questions and evaluates worksheets by email. There are grades and a certificate of completion at the end.
Learners completing Physics Part 2: Waves will be able to:
The first lesson is about electromagnetic radiation, commonly called EM waves. We focus on the use of EM waves in spectrometers for chemical analysis. We access satellite data sets and plot imagery taken from remote sensing (space based) spectrometers in the infrared (IR), visible (Vis), and ultraviolet (UV) bands.
We study ocean waves, tides, and the connection to gravity. We consider the effects of the sun and the moon on the ocean tides. We access data sets from ocean buoys tracking the tides and weather, and we plot the tides on a computer.
We use spring motion to understand the larger idea of sinusoidal waves. We use a computer to plot spring motion given the period and frequency of a spring. We connect the idea of spring-like mechanical wave examples to vibrations for solid objects.
We learn about heat energy and how heat flows from hot to cold. We learn about the 3 modes of heat transfer, known as radiation, conduction, and convection. We discuss ideal heat flow in solids and fluids, and we connect the idea to the formation of real-world coastal weather patterns such as the sea breeze, which is driven by solar heating. We access and plot real world atmospheric temperature data.
We study the pressure waves moving around the globe to explain the weather. We access and plot real world atmospheric pressure data sets and learn about weather maps.
Physics Part 2: Waves is a continuation course from Intro to Physics (Part 1). Take Part 1 first, unless you’ve already studied Newton’s Laws of Motion.
Physics Part 1 is followed by Physics Part 2: Waves. Advanced physics courses include Physics Part 3: Electricity and Circuits and Physics Part 4: Gasses.
Hi, I’m Dr. Scott, the course instructor and author of the digital materials that you get with the course.
As a former college professor, engineer, and scientist, I think it’s really strange that most learners don’t get much physics until about their last year of high school, if at all. Physics is all around us. And it really doesn’t take tons of annoying math to appreciate it.
The focus of my courses is a practical physics education, and we’ll strategically avoid most of the complicated equations, weird math, and long calculations that plague the typical physics classroom.