
*M Physics Honors
The fundamentals of Newtonian Physics are stressed in this exploration of basic Physics. Motion, Newton’s Laws, forces, and energy transformations are topics covered that prepare the student for future courses in college. Lab work is designed to strengthen and support the concepts. The practical applications of mathematics help students understand the relationship between Mathematics and Science.
Class Preparation
It is expected that each student be prepared for class each day with completed assignments, a calculator, a pencil (no pen!), a logically organized notebook, and a covered textbook.
Grading System
Grades will be derived via a percentage system. 30% of each student’s grade will be based on “daily assignments” such as classwork, homework, and notebooks. An additional 30% will be based on “minor assignments” such as labs, projects and activities. The final 40% of the grade will be based on quizzes and tests or “major assignments.” No late work will be accepted. Typical point values per assignment are as follows:
 Daily Assignments 5  25 points
 Minor Assignments 10  50 points
 Major Assignments 25  100 points
Lab Reports
The Physics lab report format consists of four parts:
I. ObjectivesII. Data
III. Analysis
IV. Conclusions
Projects
Many inclass projects and “competitions” will hopefully keep class activities lively and fun! In addition to contentbased Physics labs, Physics Olympics competition events may include: paper tower, penny barge, slowest glider, vertical kites, egg drop, and others!!!
The EndofSemester Project will be completed at home and will have multiple due dates. This project may be the Mousetrap Vehicle, the Catapult, or something equally challenging.
Extra Instruction
Extra instruction is available before school, during Unit Lunch, SERA, and after school upon request.
Course Syllabus
Unit 1 : Math In Science
The metric system / international system of units
• Definitions of prefixes
• “Swing the decimal”
Significant figures
• Tools read according to graduations, “one estimate” rule
• Rules for addition/subtraction and multiplication/division of measurements
Scientific notation
• Sig figs rules for recording measurements
• Correct use of calculator
Dimensional analysis
• Conversion factors
• “Fencepost” method of unit conversion
Accuracy and precision
• Definitions
• Applications to measurements, dart gun activity
Linear, quadratic, and inverse relationships
• Graphing skills, independent and dependent variables, scale, line of best fit, slope
• Recognition of curves and corresponding equations
Unit 2: Vectors
Vector vs. scalar quantities
• Distance vs. displacement, speed vs. velocity
Position, displacement, and velocity vectors
• Positive and negative directions
• Baseball game example
Vector addition
• “Tiptotail” and “resultant goes from starttofinish” rules
• Identify the hypotenuse, opposite, and adjacent sides
Pythagorean theorem and trigonometric functions
• Equations and mnemonic devices for recall, “Oscar”
• Calculator skills
Vector decomposition
• Resolving the resultant into its components
Unit 3: Kinematics
Motion
• Frame, time interval, particle model
Velocity
• Equations
• Problemsolving steps
• Positiontime graphs, slope
Acceleration
• List of givens
• Equations
• Velocitytime graphs, slope and area under the curve
Free fall
• V_{i}=0 for dropped objects
• Acceleration due to gravity, a=g=9.8m/s^{2}
• Terminal velocity
Word wall activities and presentations.
Unit 4: Dynamics
Forces and motion
• Freebody diagrams
• Types, F_{f}, F_{sp}, F_{N}, F_{T}, F_{thrust}, F_{g}
• Equilibrium
• Newton’s laws, inertia, seatbelts
• Mass vs. weight, weightlessness
Forces
• Contact vs. longrange, force of gravity, drag
• Static and kinetic friction forces
• Simple harmonic motion/pendulum equation, period, amplitude, mechanical resonance
Motion in two dimensions
• Equilibrant, net force
• Inclined planes
Projectile motion
• Setting conditions
• Projectile, trajectory, parabola, zenith, range, fight time, v_{x}, v_{y}
Circular motion
• Centripetal acceleration, centripetal force
Unit 5: Momentum
Momentum
• “Quantity of motion”
• Equations and units
Impulse – Momentum Theorem
• Dale Earnhardt crash vs. other NASCAR crashes
Law of Conservation of Momentum
• Closed, isolated system
Unit 6: Energy
Energy and work
• Definitions and relationship
• Calculation of power
• Simple and compound machines
Potential energy
• Gravitational potential energy
• Elastic potential energy
Kinetic energy
• Moving objects
Law of Conservation of Energy
• Solve problems, analyze collisions
Endofsemester project.