As I write this, NFL Kickoff Week is about to begin. The NFL know how to stage an event to get people excited for the 5 month season ahead. It’s a journey millions of people tune in for and have been waiting all year for.
This is the type of enthusiasm educators hope to generate in their students. Incorporating a project based approach is one way I’m hoping to bring this enthusiasm into my physics classroom. Sometime this kick-off event can be called an entry event. It is meant to generate thought not simply increase student engagement. Entry events can take many different forms from field trips to a teacher presenting the class with a reading, statistic, or problem that elicits a reaction and curiosity.
The driving question for our first term project asks students “How can I use physics to hack sports?” Students will consider personal athletic events or sporting events that they enjoy. They will examine 1 technique and examine the physics behind the successful execution of the technique for high school athletes and sportsmen. Then, they will take the role of a coach to improve technique or prevent injury.
When looking at Gold Standard PBL elements, one key element that we are hoping to bring in with our kickoff event is authenticity. To this end, we have designed an entry event which will bring in athletic professionals from the state to speak to our students.
Our great professional were
Jeremy Jacobs from Milwaukee Barbell
Matt Gifford from NX Level Athletics
Sharif Chambliss UWM Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach
Jackie Friesen UW-Madison Assistant Women’s Hockey Coach
What follows is a video summary of the event.
It was great to have so many professionals take in interest in our students and show them the connections between athletics and physics.