High school physics problem sheets and tests

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In summary, this retired physics teacher saved problem sheets and tests for use with beginning or experienced teachers. If you are a beginning or experienced teacher and need pre-made problems and tests, this teacher will send you hers.
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Oldteacher
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I'm a retired physics teacher who taught physics and AP physics for maybe 40 years. I saved my problem sheets and tests. If you are a beginning (or experienced) teacher and need pre-made problems and tests I'll send you mine. I'll wait a few months for a reply, then to the dumpster they go. Reply to [Personal e-mail address redacted by the Mentors]
 
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Welcome to PF. Folks can reply to you via PM or here in this thread.
 
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To: OP
It is so great that you have been imparting knowledge, character norturing, and impacting positively the lives of many. I admire your contributions. Kudos.
 
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Oldteacher said:
I saved my problem sheets and tests. If you are a beginning (or experienced) teacher and need pre-made problems and tests I'll send you mine.
How many pages is this? Are you able to scan them so you have soft copies? Or are they already in PDF or another format?
 
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berkeman said:
How many pages is this? Are you able to scan them so you have soft copies? Or are they already in PDF or another format?
Background to how this material was used. The school I taught in was a working-class suburb. Students ranged from average to an occasional brilliant student. Most years I had a few exchange students from foreign countries who were always excellent. The biggest difference from most schools was that a much greater percentage of students took physics than in most schools. So I made the practice material and exams have mostly basic material with a few challenging problems for the best students. Feedback from students who took college physics indicated they were well-prepared.

How I taught. 1) Introductory lecture, introduction of terms, formulas, what the variables stood for, simple plug-in problems we worked together. 2) Work problems, work problems, work problems. Problem sheets of increasing difficulty until most students were on board. 3) Harder and multi-step problems. 4) The day prior to the test, a “practice test”. 5) The actual exam. Toward the end of my career I knew what the common errors would be and told the students what to be extra careful with.

Course content I taught in the traditional order. First semester – mechanics. Second semester – heat, light, electricity, waves, etc. Early in my career I spent a week on basic trigonometry at the beginning of first semester as most students had not yet had trig. Later I eliminated this because math was taught better and faster by math teachers. I included a few “weird” topics that are often left out of an introductory course: planetary motion, rotary motion with rotational inertia, liquids (density, Bernoulli equation, etc.) photoelectric effect, electromagnetism. Some topics I included just because they interested me and some because they were included in an annual physics contest at the University of Alabama where I sometimes took my best students. I seldom got to every topic but always included all the mechanics topics.

I will attach a few scans of material from one topic for anyone to see if it is usable. There is too much to scan the whole lot. I’ll just ship it to whomever wants it. There are about 20 folders, each folder for one physics topic. In each folder are maybe 50 to 100 sheets of problems and tests. Most with answers. The simple drawings and cursive writing may not appeal to many. The variables in the formulas may use different letters and symbols than you use. But physics is physics.. The problems vary from very easy to pretty hard.

If you want these I will box them up and mail them to you.

I'm getting ready to post this message and the forum software shrank the scans. If you open them up and zoom maybe you can read them better.
 

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A couple of things to add...
  • I found that having an answer key on the practice problem sheets is a real plus. It provides immediate feedback to the student that he is learning and accomplishing. If he doesn't solve the problem correctly he can immediately ask me or another student for help. It is fun for the student to solve a hard problem and get immediate feedback. Every now and then in class I would hear a student exclaim, "Yes !" after they worked a hard problem and verified their answer.
  • Memorizing formulas: Early in my career I made the students memorize the formulas. Later I quit this and printed a list of useful formulas at the top of the test. Why? Rote memorization will turn a student off quickly. The time is better spent with more practice and reasoning out harder problems. The AP exams provide a formula list. If a formula temporarily escapes your mind or you want to verify a seldom-used formula, you can do this. If you don't know the material a formula list won't help you anyway. Lastly, a high-class student would rather do poorly on a test than cheat, while the cheaters will use their crib sheet with no qualms whatsoever. Providing a formula list evens the playing field. It's your class. Set the policy you wish. One other thing, I did ask them to know their trig functions and formulas by heart. Indian chief Sohcahtoa helped them. I stole this from a math teacher. .[ sine = opposite / hypotenuse. etc. ]
 
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Related to High school physics problem sheets and tests

What are common topics covered in high school physics problem sheets and tests?

Common topics include Newton's laws of motion, energy and work, power, momentum, waves and sound, electricity and magnetism, and basic concepts of modern physics such as quantum mechanics and relativity.

How can students effectively prepare for high school physics tests?

Students can effectively prepare by regularly attending classes, completing all assignments, practicing problem-solving regularly, reviewing class notes, using additional resources like textbooks and online tutorials, and participating in study groups.

What are some strategies for solving physics problems on tests?

Some effective strategies include carefully reading the problem, identifying and listing known and unknown variables, drawing diagrams if applicable, applying relevant physics principles and formulas, checking units for consistency, and reviewing the solution to ensure it makes sense.

How important are practice problems for understanding high school physics concepts?

Practice problems are crucial for understanding high school physics concepts as they help students apply theoretical knowledge to practical situations, reinforce learning, and improve problem-solving skills, which are essential for performing well on tests.

What resources are available for students struggling with high school physics problem sheets and tests?

Resources available include tutoring services, online educational platforms, physics textbooks, teacher office hours, study groups, and educational videos on platforms like YouTube that explain difficult concepts and provide step-by-step problem-solving techniques.

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