Modelling my cats as particles, fluffy ones.
I was looking at K=kinematics with my year 11 Additional Maths class and they were struggling to link the algebra with the graph with an idea of what was happening in real life. On our course (Cambridge IGCSE Add Maths 0606), learners have to understand displacement, its relation to velocity and acceleration, use calculus to more between these equations and interpret displacement time and velocity time graphs.
I am pretty bad at mechanics, I've never liked Physics, so I'm always worried that I pass on this hatred to my students. Hence creating a task all about cats to ease my dislike!
Learners will watch 2 videos of my cats, Furmat (named after Fermat) and Boba (named after Boba Fett), chasing toys in "linear" motion. They need to record, as accurately as they can, the position of the cat at each second. This data is then transferred to Geogebra where the computer will model the equation of the bivariate graph drawn, this in itself raised some interesting questions. I had a conversation with some students about restricting domain as they disliked that their equation implied it could model the cats motion outside of their data range. Some students were obsessed with getting the line to go through each point, whilst others realised it was better to get a graph that made sense instead.
I found it interesting that many learners suddenly froze and forgot the basics because it wasn't a standard exam style question, like looking at a displacement time graph and knowing the point where the cat had the highest velocity.
Comments welcome, as always!
I am pretty bad at mechanics, I've never liked Physics, so I'm always worried that I pass on this hatred to my students. Hence creating a task all about cats to ease my dislike!
Learners will watch 2 videos of my cats, Furmat (named after Fermat) and Boba (named after Boba Fett), chasing toys in "linear" motion. They need to record, as accurately as they can, the position of the cat at each second. This data is then transferred to Geogebra where the computer will model the equation of the bivariate graph drawn, this in itself raised some interesting questions. I had a conversation with some students about restricting domain as they disliked that their equation implied it could model the cats motion outside of their data range. Some students were obsessed with getting the line to go through each point, whilst others realised it was better to get a graph that made sense instead.
I found it interesting that many learners suddenly froze and forgot the basics because it wasn't a standard exam style question, like looking at a displacement time graph and knowing the point where the cat had the highest velocity.
Comments welcome, as always!


cats.docx  
File Size:  659 kb 
File Type:  docx 