Active Instruction

Trying to cheer up Thomas, who has had a bad day, Patrick introduces the concept of Active Instruction. Also an update from Charlie and our first contact through WhatsApp!

S02E05 Timestamps

  • Thomas has an announcement @ 00:44
  • Thomas has had a bad week @ 02:00
  • Update from Charlie @ 04:45
  • Patrick introduces Active Instruction @ 09:02
  • Contact on calculators via WhatsApp @ 26:31
  • Please help with Ionising Radiation! @ 32:37


A bad day for Thomas made the team (Thomas, Patrick and Robin this week) reflect on the nature of teaching, often lonely and sometimes a bit manic. Every teacher has moments of anxiety and imposter syndrome and it’s important to give yourself a break as they say in New Hampshire. Charlie is loving his science and his year 7 group is clearly loving working with him. Charlie is one of those heroes teaching physics despite not having a science background. It’s lovely to hear his enthusiasm permeating his classroom and the joy he takes in the questions his kids are asking. If you are teaching physics and it’s not familiar to you, thank you and I hope you enjoy it as much as Charlie. Active instruction takes centre stage as the team discuss prompting kids to think and guide their discussions on physics. Finally Matt Bowman joins us from Peru and we talk calculators.

Patrick’s Links

Ways to teach… Ionising Radiation

Please share your ideas about teaching Ionising Radiation. Tweet us @physicstp with the hash tag #tptpir , use the contact form below, our Instagram account @physics_teaching_podcast or email us contact at thephysicsteacohingpodcast dot com! After tweeting about this we already have seen a brilliant video about dealing with radiation issues in Russia (Thank you David Cotton @Newmanphysics).

Join in!

Don’t forget to tell us how it goes and share your tips.  And if you happen to be at SPEED on 5th October, say hello and you will hopefully make it onto the podcast! Details on how to get in touch are below. Thanks for listening.

Please share ideas or successes – or indeed questions – on our Facebook Page: .  You can also message us via our website contact form at, Twitter @physicstp, email using  the address given in the podcast (if we remember) or by leaving a voice memo using WhatsApp or Telegram to the phone number in our Twitter profile, +44 7898 814716 (don’t call the number, nobody will answer, just hold down the microphone icon and speak your message or upload an mp3 or ogg). Don’t forget to tell us your name because we may use your audio in a future episode.

The music we use remains One legged equilibrist polka by Circus Homunculus. The jingle for WhatsApp messages is Skipping in the No Standing Zone by Peter Gresser

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