I was assigned the physics probe placement along with two other people. The task was fairly simple, research and teach ourselves how to use the LabQuest2 units with accompanying probes for applications in the physics curriculum and then present our findings to one of the physics teachers at our school. We quickly realized that there were few probes to actually research and that there were even fewer labs that incorporated the LabQuest2 so we eventually ending focusing most of our energy on the Dual Range Force Sensor and producing a short student “quick-start” guide on set up and use the LabQuest2.
The overall workload for this placement was pretty light. While at first it was a little daunting, especially since some members didn’t have a background in physics, the amount of time given for this assignment was very generous. In fact, the only reason we haven’t finished the placement is because of conflicts with the availability of the teacher we’re coaching. The trend of scheduling conflicts limiting productivity was consistent throughout the placement as we needed to meet with the teachers we were working with fairly often. Apart from this however, there were few difficulties that we ran into through the placement.
While the placement is far from completed, I’d like to not only think that it’s been successful but that it’s positively impacted not only physics teachers but also the current and future Grade 11 and Grade 12 physics students.
There are a few things that I would change about this placement. The work load was way too small for a group of 3 people and we were often waiting around for teachers to be available instead of using our time productively. Also, the project description did not accurately match what the teachers were looking for. While we were able to adapt, it took us a few meetings with the teachers before we were sure we were on the right track. Ideally, titling the placement something along the lines of “demo a lab for a physics teacher” would be more accurate. Mind you this is more of a complaint directed at the teachers requesting the placement. Plus this placement probably will never exist since they really only need one guide on the technology.
Overall, I enjoyed working on this placement as I felt that I was helping the teachers and students at our school but also that I was furthering my own education.