Tuesday, September 23, 2014

CK-12 Introduces Dozens of Interactive Physics Simulations

The CK-12 Foundation was busy creating new things this summer. Over the summer they launched a new Android app and new tools for finding and viewing review materials. This week they released dozens of new interactive physics simulations.

Each of the CK-12 physics simulations start with an introductory animation that explains the concept being demonstrated. After watching the demonstration students can play with a set of variables to see the effects of changing those variables. For example, in the archery demonstration students can change how far a bow is drawn to see what affect that has on the speed of the arrow. After experimenting with variables students can click the "challenge me" button to view a set of questions that ask them to utilize the information they learned through the simulation.

Applications for Education
The CK-12 physics simulations that I tried were not in-depth enough to be stand-alone lessons. That said, the simulations could make excellent supplementary materials to use as part of lesson online or in-person. I think that middle school and some high school students will enjoy experimenting with the variables in the simulations.