Open Letter to the President: Physics Education

Submitted by: fancylad 4 years ago in Science

If you took a class of high school physics, you"d still know nothing. That needs to change. Get your sh*t together, US.
There are 20 comments:
Male 2,862
I partially agree with what he`s saying about physics, but his knowledge of science history is a bit iffy.
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Male 14,331
@Sistarose

So you`ve got that sustainable fusion reactor almost done then.....
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Female 373
I am kind of surprised, having done Physics almost 20years ago in Australia, I just took it for granted studying relativity and quantum theory was a given.
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Male 1,586
I taught high school Physics for a year and I tried to squeeze as much modern physics in as possible. It is difficult because you have to meet the standards set forth by the state and most schools only offer physics as an elective. Most of the kids enjoyed the challenge of modern physics and they found it much more interesting than classic.
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Male 303
You could fit more in if you had more time and taught it better. There`s so much pointless repetition in school.
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Male 4,859
I think the President is a little busy to pay attention to a Canadian who narrates science videos on Youtube.
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Male 2,578
This is largely inaccurate, coming from a former student of a high school physics class.
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Male 181
"Mr. President, imagine if history classes didn`t talk about the abolition of slavery, World Wars I or II, the Great Depression, the rise of the U.S. as a global superpower, the Cold War, or the Civil Rights movement, or, heaven forbid, the first African-American president."

Gosh. He could have just said `imagine history classes in Texas` and saved time....
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Male 7,817
The issue with trying to fit in even more physics education into high school is that everything in high school is taught at such a slow pace. Even in AP classes you learn in a year what that same class in college would cover in one semester.

To jam more physics teaching in to high school we need to do one or both of two things:
1)make physics a required class for every semester you are in high school
2)start teaching basic physics classes in middle or even elementary school
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Male 2,711
Bah! The world`s gonna end next month anyway...
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Male 167
I don`t think he wants these students to be taught the "ins and outs" of these theories, just the broad concepts so that these students are aware that these ideas exist and they may be inspired to pursue further education in physics and math.

He is lamenting the general ignorance of the population when it comes to technology and physics. He just wants people to be aware of the modern developments in physics not to have mastered the mathematics behind them
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Female 1,803
I took all the physics classes I could in high school and I can`t see how these advanced topics could be crammed in when we were still learning basics like momentum, conservation of energy, forces, etc. Even all the college-level physics classes I took for my engineering degree didn`t go into most of these very specific subject areas.
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Male 884
This is factually inaccurate or vague at best.

While I agree with the premise that more science education is a good thing, a lot of what is said here is just untrue. Moreover, it varies from state to state.

I know for a fact that in at least this state relativity, wave-particle duality, the uncertainty principle, and the gravitational effect on light are all mandated to be taught in public high school physics classes.

While this is not all of what he suggested was missing, it does address several of the examples that he gave. Atomic structure (yes, modern atomic structure) is taught in chemistry class as is the E-M spectrum.

The main problem is that kids just don`t take high school physics.



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Female 9,561
@Thonious, I was thinking the same thing. I know a good number of people who think that education should be left to local and state government. I don`t believe that, but I could hear the argument in my head when I saw this.
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Male 2,855
LOL! He thinks High School kids as a whole are capable of learning!
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Male 334
sometimes it isnt only wether they are willing to learn, sometimes it comes down to us ,wether we are willing to teach
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Male 5,811
Well, to imply that you can teach everything in physics in a high school classroom is foolish. I`m assuming they don`t go too much into the newer developments because:
1) There just isn`t enough time
2) You need to understand the basics before you can go into more advanced theories
3) It`s just high school physics. I`m not expecting any high school grad to know the ins and outs of all of physics.
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Male 987
Before this goes too far we have to ask whether the Federal government should even be involved in local schools.
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Male 14,331
LOL! He thinks High School kids as a whole are willing to learn!
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Male 20,829
Link: Open Letter to the President: Physics Education [Rate Link] - If you took a class of high school physics, you`d still know nothing. That needs to change. Get your sh*t together, US.
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