Physics

Name that motion     Click to start today's minilab.  Then enlarge window and select "begin activity"

Letter to students & parents   Introduction to physics with Mr. Halverson

Course description                  What is physics?

Syllabus                                    Topics, dates and labs for 2017-2018

Policies                                     Concise answers to most of your questions

Factor label method                How to solve certain types of word problems

Graphing guidelines                How to make a good graph

CA physics standards            
This is what you are supposed to learn (new standards are coming soon)

YouTube physics tutorials       Short videos by the author of our book, Mr H says they're good!  The videos are more or less in the same order as our book.  To see the specific topics,
click on a group of 10.

Links to cool physics websites

Force and mass                  Equilibrium 4 U                     Mr H says watch this!  User-friendly minilecture by our textbook's author
 
                                                      Hoops and nuts game            Go to "Inertia in action", then select the high-speed video to watch hoop dreams fail (how not to do it) or success (see the difference in technique?)

                                         Shopping cart inertia             Epic fail at the shipping dock!  Click on "Shopping cart inertia"

                                                             Walking on the moon             One-sixth the gravity, but full inertia

Motion                                     Weightless in space                  Tour the space station to appreciate what weightless means.                                                         
                                      
                                                     Black holes                               Don't get too close or you're a goner!

                                        Galileo on the moon                Hammer and feather race to a tie, genuine space science!

                                        Bowling ball vs feather        Race in the world's biggest vacuum chamber

                                              Monkey hunter                       Dramatic, large-scale demo with a volunteer monkey.  Click on "Physics force: monkey and hunter"  

                                                    Supersonic skydiving             To see Felix Baumgartner's insane leap from 23 miles high, click on "The Final Jump" video

                                                    Helmet cam version               Experience the drama: you are falling with Felix (from Go Pro)

Momentum and energy   Newton's cradle                    Those crazy swinging balls, giant size

                                                   Newton ball tricks                 Check these out, try them in class!                

                                                   Air track simulator               Very cool, use your own air track for all kinds of collisions.  Requires Flash player.

                                                         Wagon jumping                     Conservation of momentum faceplant


Gravity and space      Gravity is not a force               Einstein says says it's a space-time warp, simple cartoon explanation of general relativity

                                                       Artificial gravity                    Clip from movie "2001: a Space Odyssey" showing ring-shaped, rotating space station         

Heat and energy             Energy conversions                Rhino plunge example.  Click on "all media", then on energy conversion icon
                            
                                                 Thirsty bottle                             Cool way to fill a bottle, the water flows upward against gravity.  See this before "Uncommon Cold" lab

Waves 
                                 Pendulum waves                     Must see this bizarre ensemble of pendulums
 
                                                
Resonance in tuning forks      Mysterious energy transfer                          

                                                 Moire pattern generator 
        Create your own interference pattern art!  must try to appreciate     

                       
                         Doppler train whistle              Hear the pitch change as the train passes by (may take a few seconds to download).  Video by Laurie Hedden, at Elkhorn Slough

                                                       Ripple tank simulator            Control your own ripple tank, easy to use

 
                                                Bridge collapse                        Watch the Tacoma Narrows Bridge self-destruct with a resonant wind   
                   
                                                 Bow waves                               Make your own ripple pattern

                                                 Sound simulator                      Listen and see the sound and patterns you control!  Must download applet the first time.

                                                 String telephone                       20 minute fun activity

                                                 Washtub bass
on YouTube       Yes, it's a real musical instrument

                                                Gravity waves                            Traces of the big bang just discovered!

Light and color             Color mixer                                 Simulated theatrical lighting controller lets you make any color, from the 3 primaries added together. 
                          
                                                Green flash                                 Legendary illusion at sunset.  It's quick, it helps to have a big screen, and use the pause button starting around 1:20
 
                                                Lens simulator                            Easy to use, fun site.  Optical bench with lens, rays, image.  For best results, click on virtual image.

                                                Circular rainbow                        Rarely seen, as the ground is in the way!  Check out this helicopter view over Perth, Australia
                       
                                                How to draw ray diagrams        Finding an image without any lab work!  Clearly explained

                                                     Mirage photo                                  
Is it refraction (bending) or reflection?      

Electricity and magnetism      How an electroscope works      Bozeman physics video, 8 minutes but very helpful

                                            Brainiacs: electric fence           Comedy episode about complete circuits
                       
                                            
Lightning vs minivan               Car gets blasted, occupants shielded from all force
                          
                                             War of the currents                  Tesla and his AC defeated Edison's DC system
           
                                             Lord Kelvin's thunderstorm   30 minute home lab, got to watch the You Tube to believe it

                                            Electric circuit simulator         Use your mouse to build stuff or burn them up

                       
                                            Building a DC motor                Shows how to make one, similar to our lab project, will help you to understand it! 
                 

Relativity                      Relativity basics                       You tube video, makes this important idea easily understandable 
                           
                                           Time dilation                              Here's where Einstein comes in and it gets a little hairy.  You tube video illustrates it clearly

                                            E = m c2                                          Episode 3 of Einstein series
                        
             
Particles                      Higgs boson discovered!           So that's what mass is!  Long predicted, now real as of July 2012 

                                        What is the Higgs boson?          User-friendly two-minute video
 
                                         Large Hadron Collider            The world's biggest physics experiment, photo tour

 
                                            Antimatter isolated                      Not regular atoms, all parts have opposite charge

Rotation                       Balancing act                     Miyoko Shida's artistic production balances all!  7 minutes long, must be seen to be believed.  Don't miss the ending        


                                              Pig walks upright                     Some pig: unbelievably, it moves its center of gravity way up over its front feet!
                           
                                             Spinning jump                           Shows how skater controls spin rate.  Good part starts about 2 minutes in.

                                          Merry go round of death         When they lean in, it speeds up to a sickening rate

                                             Angular momentum in space  Demonstrated calmly by an astronaut

Methods                    Significant figures tutorial        Explains this mysterious art

                                        Sig figs quick practice               Check your skill, easy to use


                                            How to use Vernier scale          That sliding ruler thing

 

Reference shelf
Superstar student?                           how to be successful in school!  check it out, you'll learn a lot
About.com physics                         links to all kinds of physics websites, a surfing start point
Library reference books                  dictionaries, encylopedias, you name it (UCSD Library)
Physics dictionary                           look up physics terms
Dictionary of units of measurement  all the world's units, even the most obscure!
Book of Phyz                                   curriculum materials by a great physics teacher
Heckathorn                                      another physics teacher's site

Contact Mr. Halverson:
E-mail at chalverson@losbanosusd.k12.ca.us
Phone at school 826-6033, best time is 2:30-4:00 or leave a message anytime
Errors in this website, or broken links? I appreciate your comments and suggestions.

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