I am very interested to learn of people's thoughts and experiences of physics in high school, an issue which has plagued me since I went through high school two years ago, where the final-year physics syllabus seemed to just expect people to memorize a set of talking points and regurgitate them in the exam, with no understanding involved. I guess that high school students don't necessarily have the tools to get a proper physics understanding, and the aim was to give people who are never going to study physics again some idea of the nature and importance of modern physics, but it left me very unmotivated. Here are some examples of questions from the physics final exam in the year I took it (2007): Question 18(a) (2 marks): How has our understanding of time been influenced by the discovery of the constancy of the speed of light? Question 27(a) (3 marks): Scientists tried to explain observations of black-body radiation using classical wave theory and then quantum theory. How does quantum theory satisfactorily explain black-body radiation? These are very interesting questions, but I feel that the answers are far beyond the ability of high school students to understand or high school teachers to teach, and the only option was basically to memorize the relevant sections of the textbook. The teachers acknowledged that this was not "real physics", but didn't have much choice but to teach to the exam. I was lucky enough to have some idea already of what "real physics" was like, but if my only exposure had been from school I would never have chosen to study physics at university, and thus missed out on a great experience. Is this really the best way? Can anyone relate a happier experience of their high school physics education?