A-Level RP: Specific Heat Capacity

Robin and Thomas are joined by Rajani Nair (@NairPhysics) who answered a Twitter call about A-level required practicals and was whisked in front of a microphone to talk to us. If you fancy coming on to talk about an aspect of physics teaching, just drop us a line in the contact form below.

Rajani had some really interesting variations on the standard Specific Heat Capacity practical, many of which would be of interest at KS4 as well as A-level, so do have a listen. Rajani shared a wonderful memorable practical which involves throwing eggs to demonstrate that smaller forces acting over a longer time are less damaging – to eggs and people. Thomas remembers the trope about standing eggs on end – he couldn’t remember the exact myth but it turns out to be “on the equinox”.

“Dispatches with de Winter” is our new regular feature for the podcast, with PGCSE Tutor, teacher, researcher and birdsong enthusiast James de Winter recommending a gem from the field of physics education research. James is wise in the ways of teaching and research and knows there can often be a disconnect, so “Dispatches…” will aim to focus on practcial advice you can trial in your classroom. James starts us off with an absolute cracker of a read: 5 Easy Lessons by Randall D Knight.

This is our last episode before half term so THANK YOU for listening, contributing, but most of all for teaching this wonderful subject. Have a well-earned break and drop us a line to say hi if you get a moment. You could follow in Rajani’s footsteps and be next episode’s guest. Don’t worry, next to Thomas and Robin, you’ll come off like Einstein! Happy Half-term everybody!

Join in!

Please share ideas or successes – or indeed questions – on our Facebook Page: https://fb.me/physicstp .  You can also message us via our website contact form at the.physicsteachingpodcast.com, 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.

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Specific Heat Capacity (GCSE Required Practical)

Happy Christmas! In the last full podcast of 2019, Thomas and Robin chat about one of the core GCSE Practicals: Measuring Specific Heat Capacity. Also, stealth physics in “fun” Christmas lessons.

Timestamps

  • Bikes follow up @ 00:54
  • Stealth Physics “fun” lessons @ 02:10
  • Chatting about measuring Specific Heat Capacity @ 15:50

Summary

Thomas doesn’t like “fun” lessons, and is a bit of a Scrooge, but Robin has a great one on Christmas lights that is much deeper than you think.

A few days ago we talked through doing the Specific Heat Capacity experiment and we talk about the cognitive load, issues and tips around doing this popular and classic practical. Although his drawing skills are as unconvincing as his podcasting skills, Robin shares these diagrams to use (or preferably ‘do better’) as the basis of some low cog-load instructions. Merry Christmas!

Equipment list

Step 1 – put oil in the openings in the metal block
Step 2 – insert heater and thermometer as show
Step 3 – connect the heater to an ammeter and a power supply, then connect a voltmeter in parallel across the heater.

Step 4 – read the current and voltage, then take an initial temperature reading and record as your t = 0 seconds reading. Start the stopwatch.
Step 5 – record the temperature every 30 seconds until the temperature hits 50 celsius.

Join in!

Please share ideas or successes – or indeed questions – on our Facebook Page: https://fb.me/physicstp .  You can also message us via our website contact form at the.physicsteachingpodcast.com, 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.

Music

The music is used under the Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 International License

Send Message