I feel the need, the need for speed!I used this activity with my GCSE group as a bit of revision on the topics of speed, converting units of measure, and re-arranging formula.
3 Acts - The Fastest Man on the Planet!
Now they decided to work out how long it took Bolt to complete the 300m race and to check whether he broke the world record record?
At this point we discussed what speed was - not just the formula. I wanted them to be able to explain what being fast was ? This was really difficult for some of them as they did not like discussing it - they were happy enough to know the formula. This was a major learning point for me - when I cover the topic speed for the first time with students I must not just give them the formula - we will debate and come up with the formula from discussion and examples - practical examples.
After the discussion they worked in pairs to find the time taken by Bolt to complete the 300m race. The problem of converting the km/h to m/s was challenging and again we discussed what 34.87km/h actually meant. They then completed their calculations to work out the time taken.
*******At this point I wish I had given the students mini-whiteboards so I could see their answers - and their working. ********
Did they learn anything? I believe they had a greater grasp of the speed equation and what it meant from their discussions. It was great to see them discussing the problem and reasoning for why the race could not be 200m long and not 400m.
Improvements : - use mini-whiteboards, ask the students to go away and come up with their own.
Will I use it again - definitely.
Try it, improve it, tell me what you think.
Act 1 - Hook Picture
Act 2 - Distance Shot
Act 3 - Video
New UPGRADE - The Dan Meyer "Bolt" Version
LINK - http://threeacts.mrmeyer.com/download/bolt.zip
For all Dan Meyers 3 acts see https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AjIqyKM9d7ZYdEhtR3BJMmdBWnM2YWxWYVM1UWowTEE#gid=0