While doing my schooling the most I liked were the laboratory classes to carry out experiments and confirm what my Physics and Chemistry teachers from Grade 9 onwards taught as the laws and principles. The subject areas specifically in Physics comprised of Mechanics, Heat, Optics, Sound, Electricity & Magnetism, and Atomic/Nuclear Physics. Fortunately, I was not bad at Mathematics, hence in comparison to my classmates, I could understand how mathematical equations of Physics Laws got derived. But those who were scared of Mathematics developed a fear within them for the beautiful subject of Physics in general. Interestingly, the same set of fearful classmates would at times internalize the “complex mathematical equations” extremely well on carrying out experiments in our laboratory class. I never skipped any laboratory class during my undergraduate and two post-graduate degrees in Physics, though at times I would bunk the theory class at University, when the lecturer was not a good one for a given course, such as Statistical Physics.
I further learned to make a student understand concepts of Physics based on mathematical equations is not imperative by making the students do as many experiments as they can, but to also ensure while Physics theory is taught in class; it is full of everyday examples we encounter while walking on the road, which the teacher at times ignores for want of time to make the vital connections between the theory/law of Physics and the physical phenomenon taking place in front of our eyes. Please remember, every Physics theory howsoever mathematically complex it may be, can be explained by the things happening around us. The reason all physical happenings around us are indeed based on principles of Physics. Unfortunately, if the school kids can connect the dots by shear observations around, their understanding of Physics would become far easier to them despite it is rooted in complex mathematical equations. Unfortunately, those teaching Physics somewhere lack inculcating this among the growing children.
So, my dear students as well as their parents, I plan to take up in my blogs to come following areas to converse with all of you. You are free to give me your comments and suggest even the topics, law, or area of Physics where you would like me to bring it before you by dismantling its mathematical complexity, based on my experience of several decades.
1. Taking the fear out of Physics for School Kids
2. Underlying Physics in Diagnostic Machines
3. How Physics govern the Human body we all possess?
Till we meet again, remain safe, and follow social distancing “physically but not on this blog”. Let me have your feedback.
March 25, 2021