2011 Professional Development & Teacher Workshop at NJIT

Location: New Jersey Institute of Technology
Date: Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Time: 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM

The Professional Development program focused on:

Using Probes, Sensors and Simulations to Enhance Understanding of High School Mathematics and Science”

Workshop topics included:

• Modeling physical experiments with Algodoo
• Plant respiration
• Mathematics of the heart rate
• Calculating absolute zero
• Alternative energy sources – wind power
• Vibration simulation

Presentation Topics and Brief Descriptions:

1. Diffusion through Membranes (For Biology and Chemistry)

• Presenter – Sita Damaraju, C2PRISM Fellow
• Diffusion is a process that allows ions or molecules from higher concentration gradient to where they are less concentrated. The presentation utilizes a conductivity probe which is capable of monitoring ions in solution. This probe provides a more visual method to observe diffusion through a semi permeable membrane.

2. Determining the Area and Volume of Regular and Irregular Geometric Shapes using Algodoo (For Mathematics)

• Presenter - Matt Manzi, C2PRISM Fellow
• The aim of this lesson is to help students in basic algebra and geometry classes learn how to determine the area and volume of irregular shapes by applying prior knowledge about the areas and volumes of “normal” shapes (e.g., squares and cubes). It is delivered in an interactive format by using a pre-made Algodoo scene that can be altered to the instructor’s specific needs.

3. Analysis of Man versus Machine; Vernier Heart Rate Monitor application in the classroom (For Biology and Mathematics)

• Presenter - Jennifer Zalk, C2PRISM Fellow
• The aim of this lesson is to demonstrate connections among biology, mathematics, health and fitness. Through this activity, students learn to collect mathematical data, calculate mean, median and mode and analyze the results conceptually and quantitatively.

4. Using Algodoo and Vernier to Demonstrate Force Acceleration and Hooke's Law (For Physics and Mathematics)

• Presenter - Matt Manzi, C2PRISM Fellow
• This exercise integrates software modeling and tangible experimentation to demonstrate the same physical phenomenon in two ways; one using a Vernier frictionless cart and the other using Algodoo.

5. Measuring Blood Pressure

• Presenter - Dino Magou, C2PRISM Fellow
• This lesson teaches students about the importance of blood pressure to their health. Students learn how to measure blood pressure and everyday activities affect blood pressure.

6. Measuring the conductivity of solutions and mixtures using Vernier (For Chemistry, Biology, and Environment Science)

• Presenter - Nick Carlson, C2PRISM Fellow
• Using the Vernier conductivity probe, students can investigate abstract chemistry, biology and environmental science phenomena like solution concentration, osmosis, ionic dissociation and water hardness.

7. Designing and testing earthquake-resistant buildings with Vernier, Algodoo and K’nex

• Presenter - Nick Carlson, C2PRISM Fellow
• This project, in which students design, build, test and ‘shake-down’ both physical and virtual buildings and measure how they respond, is a fun addition to a unit on periodic/harmonic motion, as well as an introduction to the fields of civil and mechanical engineering.

8. Calculating Absolute Zero" Probeware Demonstration (For Chemistry, Physics, and Mathematics)

• esenter - Karina Aliaga, Noyce Fellow
• This presentation focuses on providing students with an understanding of Gay-Lussac’s Law and absolute zero temperature. An experiment will be performed that will show how to use temperature and gas pressure probes to predict a value for absolute zero experimentally.