PhET Logo May 2011 Newsletter

Sam overseas for PhET

Help Support the
Future of PhET!

Your donation brings science to kids in your town and around the world.

So please consider:
$15 if you're a teacher who uses a few sims
$25-50+ if you use more sims
$200+ for individual schools
$500+ for districts

Donate Now

All donations are tax deductible.

Thanks for your support!

Upcoming Events:

ISTE 2011
Philadelphia, PA
June 26-29, 2011

Chemistry Education Research & Practice
Gordon Research Conference

Davidson, NC
June 26-July 1, 2011

AAPT (talks only)
Omaha, NE
July 30 - August 3, 2011

ACS Fall 2011 National Meeting
Denver, CO
August 28 - Sept. 1, 2011

Indianapolis, IN
November 9-11, 2011

In the Pipeline:

  • Fluid Pressure and Flow
  • Build a Molecule
  • Multiple Capacitors
  • Resonance
  • Sugar and Salt Solutions
  • Teeter Totter Torque
  • Plate Tectonics

Check Out Our Free Webinar & Podcast

PhET Webinar Screenshot

Introduce teachers new to PhET with this free archived webinar or our Podcast on iTunes.

Featured Sims:

Explore Snell's Law and More with Bending Light

Bending Light simulation

Investigate the bending of light (refraction) between two mediums with different refractive indices with the new Bending Light sim. See how changing from air to water to glass changes the bending angle. Play with prisms of different shapes and make rainbows. Use more tools to measure light intensity and probe E-field versus time. Students can learn what determines the angle of refraction, how to apply Snell's law, how the speed and wavelength of light changes in different materials, and how wavelength effects the angle of refraction. In the end, students will be able to explain how a prism creates a rainbow.

Increase Engagement with Balancing Chemical Equations

Balancing Chemical Equations simulation

Make learning how to balance a chemical equation more fun with the new Balancing Chemical Equations sim. What can you change to balance an equation? Play a game to test your ideas!

After the activity, students will be able to:

  • Balance a chemical equation.
  • Explain that the number of atoms of each element is conserved in a chemical reaction.
  • Describe the difference between coefficients and subscripts in a chemical equation.
  • Translate from symbolic to molecular representations of matter.

Check Out These Other New Simuations:

Meet Kelly:

What got you involved in PhET?
I had some teaching experience, but I was eager to learn more about how students learn chemistry. PhET gave me an opportunity to grow as an educator. What I did not expect was how much chemistry I would learn in the process!
Kelly from PhET
What do you do for PhET?
I work with the team to design and develop new chemistry sims, and I help run workshops for teachers. I also study the effect of PhET on student learning in interview and classroom settings, and present the research at conferences and in papers.

How do you see PhET helping teachers?
I like how the open-source nature of PhET gives science teachers who have little access to lab equipment -- or even the internet -- a way to use inquiry in their classrooms. I am excited to use the sims in my own teaching!

How do you see PhET helping kids?
I am continually amazed at how much students learn from using the sims, and how PhET engages students in learning science. PhET gets students to ask their own questions, which is what science is all about!

Where do you see PhET going?
I think PhET will grow in two areas: the earth and life sciences, and the middle school level. Our new sim-sharing project will give teachers more ways to use PhET in their classrooms. And of course, stay tuned for more chemistry sims!

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PhET Interactive Simulations | University of Colorado 390 UCB | Boulder, CO 80309-0390