Department of Physics

Teacher Materials

Each unit Teacher Guide provides learning cycle teaching notes, activity teaching notes and answers, safety guidelines, blackline masters, and unit material lists and assessment resources are provided for teachers in the Teacher’s Guides.

Learning Cycle Teacher Notes

These teacher notes provide you with information and strategies on how to begin and how to wrap up a learning cycle.

Getting Started teacher notes provide the following:

  1. An overview of the concepts that will be introduced and the activities that make up the learning cycle.

  2. National Science Education Standards (5-8 and 9-12) and Benchmarks for Science Literacy (6-8 and 9-12) that are being addressed.

  3. Prerequisite knowledge and skills needed by students to complete the learning cycle.

  4. Suggestions for setting the stage for student learning that focus on problems, issues, or questions about phenomena that are interesting and/or familiar to students. These suggestions provide students with a sense of what they are about to do in the learning cycle.

  5. Information for taking account of student ideas that are commonly held about physical phenomena related to the learning cycle. This information contains suggestions on how to help students confront inconsistencies in their previously held ideas and their observations.

Wrapping It Up teacher notes provide the following:

  1. Suggestions on building the case and promoting student reflection. After completing the learning cycle, students can draw from their experiences to develop an evidence-based argument for the Standards or Benchmarks that have been addressed. This section also provides suggestions on how student understanding can be assessed. It contains suggestions on how the students can reflect on what they have learned, how their initial ideas have changed, and how they can use their understanding in new situations.

  2. Thought-provoking questions and suggestions for extending student knowledge and promoting open inquiry. This section includes further investigations students might conduct that would allow them to apply their understanding to new observations and situations.

Activity Teaching Notes and Answers

Specific activity teaching notes and answers to student edition questions are provided. This section includes the following:

  1. Information to help teachers to make informed decisions on how the activity could be implemented and adapted for their classrooms

  2. Information about the ease of lab setup and calculations, the reliability and interest level, and the scientific process and reasoning skills being used

  3. A list of materials used in the activity, how to set up the materials, teaching strategies, and sample data/calculations

  4. Answers to questions asked in the activities and extensions as well as sample data

  5. Answers to the questions and solutions to the problems posed in the Conceptual Practice