Story time and predictions with mathematical models

I had the students read from 13 Planets as a follow-on activity to the Journey to the Edge of the Universe video yesterday. Although somewhat unorthodox, I noted that the exercise would clarify some of facts that are so colorfully tossed around in that video.

Perdania reads, covering the sun.

Joemar practices his reading technique

Rofino demonstrates good reading out loud technique. I had noted the importance of reading to children and that this exercise also exemplified that skill.

Cherish faces the class, but then the listeners cannot see the picture.

Sharon reads.

Pendulum data predictions.

For the lab, the students measured length versus period for the pendulum in the classroom and then used a linear regression to predict the period to predict periods at longer lengths. In class the students topped out at about 150 centimeters. Predictions were on a linear model.

Eddie with the in class rig.

Then the class moved to the gym where a 700 cm length can be tested. The 700 cm pendulum had a period of around five seconds, with students obtaining slightly different times on their stopwatches. The prediction were all too high. The lab is then trying to figure out what went wrong. First time I have taken the pendulum lab to where the length refutes the linear model. Well worth doing, the students expressed disappointment at being wrong - exactly what I had hoped. The new data throwing their predictions into disarray means a new theory is needed.


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