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IB Physics SL (2019-2020)


  • Informational Packet / Syllabus
  • Syllabus Addendum - Grading
  • Introduction to class
  • Homework - brainstorm a notation for keeping track of how far an object moves AND in which direction it travels, e.g. a man walks 20 meters eastward, then 20 meters northward, then 10 meters westward; can you write this in a way that the sum of these three motions gives you the man's final position?



  • discuss briefly the history of modeling motion
  • differentiate between average and instantaneous speeds and define constant speed
  • determine if a toy car moves with constant speed
  • create a scatter plot of the motion of a toy car and discuss the significance of its slope
  • Homework - read to p. 11 in the booklet (Physics: An Introduction); do the 6 math questions on p. 10


  • define distance, displacement, speed, velocity and acceleration
  • "read" position, velocity and acceleration graphs and relate them to one another



  • derive the kinematic (or suvat) equations
  • practice using the kinematic equations
  • Homework - solve sample IB test questions on motion graphs; if you have a textbook, read over pp. 27-38 for a review of the material we've covered thus far


  • test over motion graphs, with general questions about distance, displacement, speed (average and instantaneous), velocity and acceleration
  • Homework - install Logger Pro on your laptop (on a school-issued laptop, install it from the Software Center; on all other laptops, use these instructions); read pp. 27-38 in your textbook


  • graph the motion data in this spreadsheet and add trendlines
  • practice interpreting trendlines and using the extracted (velocity and acceleration) information to interpolate and extrapolate (file 1file 2)
  • Extra Practice  - match motion to graphs with this interactive.
  • Homework - do test corrections on a separate sheet of paper (just rework the missed problems)


  • picture day
  • read what Aristotle and Galileo had to say about falling "bodies"
  • study how objects fall using a "motion detector" - lab instructions
  • homework - finish the lab at home; read (and take notes on) pp. 8-16 in your textbook


  • use the kinematic equations for modeling freely falling objects - worksheet
  • homework - read about experimental uncertainty (its measurement and propagation in calculations) - handout


  • begin formal lab investigation of free fall acceleration
  • the general Lab Report Format


  • calculate lab uncertainties
  • the lab report will be due Wed 9/18 (at 11:59 pm) through
  • homework - you should get started on the lab report


  • graph the free fall data -- linearize the graph
  • homework - complete your lab report; the free fall calculations are due 9/23


  • quiz over free fall  postponed until Monday
  • review free fall calculations
  • discuss relative motion
  • homework - complete free fall calculations (handout)


  • quiz over free fall
  • introduction to vectors
  • homework - read pp. 39-43 in your textbook


  • model 2D projectiles
  • homework - complete this worksheet of projectile problems (the answers are given within the document)


  • review projectile problem-solving
  • projectile motion lab (online)
  • homework - complete the lab
  • pay for the IB Physics field trip to iFLY! The trip will be Mon, Oct 21.


  • Mythbusters video
  • discuss the effect of air resistance on projectile motion
  • solve IB projectile problems
  • help with projectiles
  • homework - extra projectile practice (key)


  • quiz over projectile motion
  • discuss the nature of a "law of nature" and the certainty of our knowledge
  • homework - pay for the iFLY field trip!



  • meeting with counselor
  • discuss the concept of a force and the types of forces found within our world (follow this guide and answer questions in your class notebook)


  • review types of forces
  • begin lab investigation of Newton's 2nd Law - formal lab info

**No school on Monday or Tuesday**


  • complete the lab
  • STUDENTS: before going to iFLY, you or your parent must complete this
  • online waiver!! go ahead and do this asap -- reservation #4115004005
  • homework - the formal lab write up is due...


  • field trip to iFLY !!
Lab Report Format

Unit One-Page Overviews

1.1 Measurements in physics

1.2 Uncertainties and errors

1.3 Vectors and scalars

2.1 Motion

2.2 Forces

2.3 Work, Energy, and Power

2.4 Momentum

Unit One-Page Overviews

3.1 Thermal Concepts

3.2 Modelling a gas

6.1 Circular Motion

4.1 Oscillations

4.2 Travelling Waves

4.3 Wave Characteristics

5.1 Electric Fields

Free Fall Motion: s,v,&a graphs

Parabolas in the NFL: the physics of a football punt