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Throughout this year, I have greatly enjoyed doing labs in Physics class. Not only did I have fun while doing these labs, but also learned a lot from them. By doing these labs, the abstract concepts that I learned by reading the textbooks came alive; I was able to experience firsthand the wonder of physics. The lab that I enjoyed the most doing was the Egg Drop Lab. It is quite obvious why anyone would like doing this lab. It was very interesting trying to come up with the container that would keep the egg from cracking.
I was able to try out my own theories and see if they worked. It was also very exciting when they worked. The lab that I found the hardest to do was the Nichrome Wire Lab. I had trouble with this lab because I couldnt set up the circuit correctly. I tried every way possible, but they wouldnt work. If I fixed one wrong setup, another one would be wrong.
I had to try many times before I got the right setup. The lab that helped in my understanding of physics was the Lights in Series and Parallel lab. Before doing this lab I had no clue about the differences between voltage and amps. The lab showed me that lights in series created more resistance and so lessened the amperes, and that lights in parallel drew more current and so shined just as bright as if there were one light. The lab that gave me the most understanding in math was the Ranking Frictional Forces lab.
This lab involved finding the final vector of some forces. Taking this lab before learning this in pre-calculus put me ahead of my class in math. The lab that helped the most in my understanding of the topic was the Computer/Charged Particles Lab. This was the first computer lab that I understood how to do. I really got into doing it and was excited when I got the right answers.
For the last challenge (mass spectrometer), I was able to find out which element the unknown was. When I did the calculations and found out that it was chlorine, I realized I understood the topic. This lab was really helpful in explaining a topic that the book didnt explain comprehensively. The lab that gave a very surprising outcome was the Potato/Lemon Lab. In this lab, we hooked up the circuit around the potato or lemon and conducted electricity this way. I didnt know that potatoes or lemons could conduct electricity, so I was very surprised when we did this lab.
For the labs in which we have to set up a system, it would be helpful if you had a model circuit for us to look at. It would be a lot less frustrating for some students if we could learn from looking at the model. I think it would help some students lab experience if they didnt have to turn in the lab at the end of the period. If we had one more day to work on it, then we would be able to give our conclusions and answers some more thought. In class, I found that we were in such a rush to get the lab in on time that we lost some of its value. Overall, the labs in this class were the best out of all the science classes I have taken.
They werent concerning some chemicals or plants that we would never be able to encounter in real life; they had to do with things we might encounter every day. They helped me to understand the world around me better.
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