PHYSICS C (Mechanics and E&M combined) 

Gardner Friedlander
gfriedlander@mac.com

Gardner Friedlander earned a BA at Princeton, majoring in Physics and Philosophy. He introduced AP* Physics C to his school and taught it for almost 30 years (as well as teaching physics at four other levels.) He was an AP* Physics reader for most years from 1998 to 2016 and served on the AP* Physics Development Committee for two years and on the AP* Physics C Development Committee when the B and C courses were split off. He has taught physics in three different states, finishing with 33 years at University School of Milwaukee, an independent coed day school in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

AP* Physics C—Mechanics and E&M (combined)
Summer, 2018
 
Overview: AP Physics C is a year-long calculus-based physics course equivalent to a typical introductory university course for scientists or engineers. The College Board recommends that this course not be a first-year course in physics, but in recognition of differing demands at different schools, the exam is broken into two 90 minute parts—Mechanics and Electricity and Magnetism.  Thus if students have had no physics prior to this course, they can take a full year covering just Mechanics.  If they have had a good prior exposure to physics, then both halves can be taken in a single year.
This institute is designed to assist teachers using either model.  Participants will have the chance to engage with other teachers who teach courses similar to their own, work on pacing and syllabus development, and design and execute laboratory and demonstration activities for use in their own classrooms, with participants encouraged to share their own ideas for demonstrations and best practices.  They will leave the institute with access to almost 50 years of past exams and solutions.  Emphasis will be placed on teaching problem solving techniques and approaches to teaching AP Physics C with an emphasis on encouraging higher order thinking skills and remediating student misconceptions.  Participants will often work in small groups to allow them to choose the activities and portions of the course that best fit their needs.  For each course (Mechanics and E&M) as appropriate, the presenter will familiarize participants with the whole framework for the curriculum, with emphasis on the portions that have proved most difficult for students in the past.
 
Day 1
• Introductions of presenter, participants, supplied materials, and the course(s)
• Particular challenges in teaching AP Physics C
• Small group examinations of the Course Objectives (Mech.)
• Whole group work with some sample Free Response items (Mech.)
• Small group preparation of 2018 Free Response answers (Mech. and/or E&M)
• Discuss a plan for preparation of individual course syllabi and the Audit
 
Day 2
• Presentation of solutions to 2018 FR questions
• Whole group discussion of the process of scoring AP Exams with the 2018 Mech. exam as a model
• Whole and small group discussion of how to implement AP-level problems into a high school AP course.
• Whole group consideration of what makes AP Physics C laboratory experience different from a typical HS course.  What should lab reports look like?  How are they evaluated and made into a portfolio?
• Small group experiment work #1
•Choice of
o   Small group work on some of the Mech. problems student have found most difficult in this millennium
o   Recognition of the different approach of the E&M course.  Small group examination of the E&M Course Objectives and the 2018 E&M exam.
 
Day 3
• Whole group discussion of when and how calculus should be introduced in different school situations
• Presenting Rotation, historically the hardest area in Mech. for students to understand
• “Best Practice” presentations by participants
• Individual and small group examination of MC questions
• Small group experiment work #2
•Choice of Mech. or E&M small group work on some of the problems student have found most difficult in this millennium
 
Day 4
• Online resources: presentation and examination
• “Best Practice” presentations by participants
• Small group experiment work #3
• Develop a summary of ideas for implementation of a laboratory plan that includes both classic equipment and adding new technology, all while laddering different levels of student inquiry
• Laboratory notebook and syllabus (and/or completed problem records) due from credit participants
·      Workshop conclusion and evaluation