8. Venn Hats, Meows and a Mysterious Tube

Mr Benjie

As David Bowie once mused “Is there seismic activity on Mars?” ( I think that’s what he said…), and who are we to argue?  So we kicked off discussing NASA Mars Insight Lander and then Robin confessed to group about his tendency to get on a self-righteous soapbox (see episode 7!).  Luckily this week’s chat was the perfect antidote to stress as he chatted to Carole Kenrick: primary teacher, secondary teacher,  artist and PhD student, she wears many metaphorical hats … and has a podcasting cat called Mr Benjie.

Carole tells us about two of the practicals she likes the most: decay-dice and mystery tubes. Decay dice take the simplicity of rolling one die, developing it in to a beautiful mathematical model. She uses mystery tubes from the Berkley Understanding Science web site and they kindly provide instructions to make them. Thomas couldn’t resist making a mystery tube of his own and “Thomas from the future” appears to tell how he got on.

Thomas' early prototype
Thomas’ early prototype

Carole also introduces us to “Physics Fairy” (no, really, check it out!) and explained how it came into non-existence from working with Force Goggles from the Supporting Physics Teaching web site.

New Competition – Closes 13th December

Help us with our planned “Electricity” episode by giving us your top tips… and pitfalls. Either tweet us with the hash tag #physicstpelectricity or comment in the thread on our Facebook page. Thomas and Robin will choose a winner on the 13th of December and will send you a signed copy of Ben Rogers’ wonderful book The Big Ideas in Physics and How to Teach Them.

It remains an enthralling and educational adventure making this podcast for you.  We love hearing from you and you are a very big part of the adventure; guide us, tell us what you want to hear about. It really is your podcast, so please get in touch: teachers of physics are our very favourite superheroes!

The music we use remains One legged equilibrist polka by Circus Homunculus.