Summer is just around the corner and maybe you’ll visit one of America’s numerous amusement parks. You’ve purchased your ticket and boarded a roller coaster. Now you’re barreling down the track at 60 miles per hour, taking hairpin turns and completing death-defying loops. All the while, challenging the laws of phsyics.
Waldorf’s high school physics and calculus class experienced those famous laws of physics during a visit to Six Flags Great Adventure on Thursday, May 1st for the theme park’s annual Physics, Math, and Science Day. Amidst the 72 amusement park rides, the students deepened their understanding of lessons and equations learned in the classroom.
Students did a number of physics problems – such as velocity, kinetic energy, friction, centripetal acceleration, gravity, inertia and g-forces – involving the theme park’s roller coasters and spinning rides. The engaging, hands-on experience brought tons of screams, laughs and cheers!
“The idea of this trip is for students to experience these rides and have a vivid experience of the laws of mechanics at work. Using the theme park as a motif throughout the mechanics unit added a wonderful sense of relevance and excitement to the physics classroom and world,” said Victor Kim, Waldorf’s high school physics and calculus teacher. “This is an event that the students and I look forward to each year!”