Here are many of the benefits of Energizing Physics over traditional textbook driven physics courses.
- Energy Focused: While textbooks spend the first third of the course on motion and forces, students taking EP learn about energy early on in the course. Early introduction of energy lays the importance of the concept, connects energy to other physics concepts, and allows for an ongoing (year long) dialog on energy and society (see Interludes below).
- Energy Interludes: After each chapter, students investigate a topic surrounding energy and society such as, energy per capita of different countries, energy sources, energy uses, energy loses, and governmental energy policies. These short projects help students see the role energy plays in our society and the need for active, thoughtful management of energy resources. Students build and enhance their research and reporting skills while connecting the curriculum to the greater society.
- Challenges Student Misconceptions: We designed the activities and practice problems to probe and challenge specific student misconceptions reported in physics education research and the misconceptions observed at Boston Latin School over the past 6 years.
- 5E Learning Cycle: Each lesson in the course includes all 5 E's, with continual evaluation and reflection.
- Designed around the National Standards: The national science standards form the core of our course.
- Algebra Based: Success in the course requires experience with basic algebra, allowing any student in grades 9 through 12 to be successful.
- Project Oriented Chapters: Each chapter's driving project provides incentive for student learning. These projects provide a real world context for the course material.
- A Coherent Program: The course scaffolds concepts for increasing complexity.
- Embedded Assessments: We took time and developed tested formative and summative assessments which help students and teachers gauge their abilities.