About

I’m Brian, a physics teacher and I want to be better at it.

My physics courses (honors and AP C: Mechanics) are built on a modeling instruction approach. My engineering course is a work in progress, but I’ve begun porting modeling ideas into it.

This year, I’m implementing standards based grading in my physics classes. The “normal” assessments and grading methods have always left my students and I unsure about what they know. I think standards based grading is going to change that.

Outside of school, I’m a big nerd. I read comics, play games, like to climb things, and think about teaching physics.

4 comments

  1. I am a student research assistant at Montana Tech of the University of Montana. Technology has created exciting ways to connect with others and form professional learning networks. As a part of an active member of a social media community made up of teachers, I wanted to contact you to ask you to participate in a study our research group is conducting.

    Research shows that face-to-face professional networks provide much needed professional and personal support to teachers. You and the community you belong to are providing these types of support using social media. We are interested in learning more about your experiences using social media to connect with other teachers and your opinions about online professional networks.

    The purpose of our study is to learn how professional learning networks created through social media are similar or different than face-to-face networks and what you feel are advantages of using social media to connect with other teachers. Our hope is that the results of this study will inform how professional networks for teachers are designed in the future. If you are interested in participating, please send an email to me at teacherblogPLN@gmail.com. I will send you a link to a short online survey and will set up time for a short skype interview.

    If you have any questions you would like to ask about the study, please do not hesitate to contact me.

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    Kaitlyn Rudy
    Research Assistant
    Department of Mathematical Sciences
    Montana Tech of the University of Montana

  2. Hi Brian,

    I am entering my 3rd year of teaching AP Physics C in a few weeks and have been desperately seeking ideas for a complete overhaul of the course. The past 2 years have just been me struggling to keep up and this year I’d really like to attempt to cover both Mechanics and E&M if the students are on board for the pace. Anyway, I’ve been to a modeling workshop and use the essence of modeling as much as possible given curriculum restraints in 1st year physics. I’m fairly certain that I read a post or comment of yours at one time outlining the models you use in your AP Physics course, and I was hoping you wouldn’t mind sharing them with maybe some suggestions for any particular paradigm/deployment labs you like. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks in advance,
    Amanda Powell
    PreAP & AP Physics C Teacher
    Leander, TX

    1. Hi Amanda,

      I just so happen to be reworking my AP Physics C: Mechanics course right now. My school offers the course as a second year of physics, with most students having completed a year of honors physics with a modeling focus. Let me pull my thoughts together and put something up here.

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