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The UIUC Physics Van (and some other outreach efforts)

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The UIUC Physics Van (and some other outreach efforts)

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  1. The UIUC Physics Van(and some other outreach efforts) Mats Selen, Nov/8/02

  2. See http://van.hep.uiuc.edu/ UIUC Physics Van Overview • Traveling science show of exciting experiments staffed by volunteer undergraduates from all over campus. • Target area elementary schools (~100 mile radius). • Other venues… • Illinois State Fair • Adler Planetarium • Snowmass (Colorado!) • Chicago Academy of Sciences • Girl/Boy Scouts, Home Schools, BOAST, IMSA etc… • Many others… • We have done ~320 shows since 1994: • Seen by over 43,000 kids & 3400 adults ! • We are funded (largely) by the UIUC Physics Department. • About $5,000 per year for supplies/travel + 2 x 25% TA positions.

  3. Coolest Flyers on Quad Day Physics Van: How it’s done… First recruit volunteers

  4. Rent Van from the UIUC motor-pool and pack it with interesting experiments Drive to the show(~ 1 hour)

  5. The Volunteers love it too !

  6. Meet the kids…

  7. Everyone Has Fun 5 sec video clip

  8. “Whys Guy Wednesday” Live Shots • We do “Live Science” shots every Wednesday morning on Channel 3 (WCIA). • Connection to Ch. 3 developed because of Physics Van (long story). 45 sec video clip

  9. Physics 123: How The World WorksA science class for elementary education majors • Current “Physical Science” requirements is 2 Gen-Ed’s • Students usually take Nutrition & Geography • Most are very intimidated by “hard” science. • K-4 Education Standards say elementary school teachers should know how to teach quite a bit of physics: • Properties of matter, forces & motion, heat, sound, light, electricity, magnets… • We are designing a new 3-hr “PS Gen Ed” class targeting these students (about 150/year). • Using inquiry based teaching (working with Ed. College). • Each Week: • 2 hour inquiry based lab (Monday) • Web based homework & instructor feed-back • 1 hour lecture/discussion (Friday)

  10. The big idea will be to boost students confidence in science by: 1) Exposing them to the same stuff they will have to teach. 2) Have them each build a hands-on “kit” for teaching the covered concepts. 3) Provide packets and other resources to use in their own classrooms. Physics 123: How The World WorksA science class for elementary education majors Introduction 1. Uncertainty and the Nature of Science Properties of Matter 2. Atoms and Molecules 3. States of Matter 4. Volume and Density 5. Floating and Sinking Forces and Motion 6. Measuring and Graphing Motion 7. Simple Forces 8. Investigating Gravity 9. Rolling and Ramps 10. Levers & Pulleys Electricity and Magnetism 11. Playing with simple circuits 12. Understanding Voltage and Current 13. Making Magnets 14. Fun with static electricity Prototype offering in Fall/03(probably limit to 20 students)

  11. Other Efforts • Participation in GAMES summer camp for middle school girls. • Every summer. • Physics 111 Labs for High School Students • Provide hands on experience with university labs. • CyberClub • Computer Literacy and Mathematics Enrichment Program for Disadvantaged Middle School Youths. • The Physics of Baseball (Al Nathan)