Learning Recommendations:

General Description:

  • Year-long laboratory course, which meets the science requirements for graduation and university entrance.
  • Students will gain an understanding of the fundamental principles of the physical world and an appreciation of many of the phenomena they experience in their lives.
  • Emphasis on lab skills and scientific inquiry.
  • Emphasis on critical thinking and problem solving.
  • Physics is a quantitative science and students do a significant amount of math.
  • This course fulfills (1) college prep science requirement, as outlined by the Washington Student Achievement Council (WSAC) as a lab-based and algebra based science course.

Content:  Students will be actively engaged in learning and experiencing the following:

  • Methods and application of physical measurement
  • Mechanics
  • Wave mechanics
  • Color, light and/or sound and optics

Other topics included but not limited to:

  • Thermodynamics, electricity, magnetism, Modern Physics (Issaquah High)
  • Thermodynamics, electricity, lunar astronomy (Liberty)
  • Geophysics and applications of EM radiation (Skyline)

Skills taught in this course:

  • Increased use of inquiry-based and guided laboratory work
  • Expanded problem solving and critical thinking strategies
  • Use of sophisticated equipment and probe ware to investigate physics phenomena
  • Data analysis and graphing techniques
  • Communication through scientific writing

Strategies:  Students will learn through a combination of:

  • Lecture/discussion
  • Inquiry-based and guided laboratory work
  • Problem solving and critical thinking exercises
  • Interactive, student and teacher led demonstrations
  • Student projects and research with emphasis on communication
  • Cooperative learning

Homework:  Students will complete homework via WebAssign, an online homework service. Homework for each unit will be posted at the beginning of each unit with assigned due dates. Each assignment should take a total of about one hour. With several days or weeks to complete each assignment. Students are expected to manage their time wisely in order to complete each assignment in a timely manner.

Course Fee / Materials:  Yes, see Course/Club/Misc. Fee link.  Students to provide Scientific function calculator (TI-83+, TI-84 or TI-Nspire recommended).