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New ways to teach physics laws

A senior professor in the Department of Physics at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT-K) Dr HC Varma has designed 30 experiments to teach difficult laws of Physics to students. All the experiments can be done using waste materials by students in their homes.

india Updated: May 24, 2010 17:52 IST
GP Varma

A senior professor in the Department of Physics at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT-K) Dr HC Varma has designed 30 experiments to teach difficult laws of Physics to students. All the experiments can be done using waste materials by students in their homes.

The new experiments was displayed during the six-day-long National Workshop of Utsahi Physics Teachers (NWUPT) which started in IIT-K on May 21.

The workshop was organized to train Physics teachers of various schools. About 45 teacher-participants from 13 states including Kerala, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujrat, Chattisgarh, Haryana, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Uttrakhand, Assam, Bihar, Delhi and West Bengal. Besides five eminent resource persons from various universities imparted expert lectures on the occasion.

In order to teach the students about the Rotational Function, Friction and Collision a simple experiment was designed with the help of a wire and nut. The experiment was named "Dancing Nut".

The experimenter held a stiff wire in hanging position. If a nut passed through the wire without twisting it at the beginning, it would drop to the ground straight. But, if it was put in the wire in a rotating position it would go on rotating through the wire following the law of friction unless it fell upon the ground.

'Simple Harmonic Motion' is designed to teach students that black bodies radiates more. Under the experiment half of the body of an electric iron was painted black.

The other part remained shining with the nickel polish. When the iron was heated the temperature at the black side was greater than the temperature at the shining part of the iron.

Dr Varma designed a simple method to teach students why food cooked in a pressure cooker cooks fast. According to him, water boils at 100 degree Celcius while in a cooker water boils at 140 degree Celsius which helps cook the food faster.

For measuring the boiling temperature inside the cooker he made a hole in the lid of a pressure cooker and put Alumel Chromel Wire inside the cooker through the hole in the lid and sealed the hole.

The wire is connected with multi meter outside which keeps on recording the boiling point of the water in the cooker.

He has also made a telescope using one convex and one concave lens of 35 Focal Length and 05 Focal Length respectively. If Concave lens is put behind the Concave lens at a distance of thirty centimeter, one can view the smallest things in bigger form up to a distance of twenty meter.

Similarly, an experiment with water filled water can teach about the circular motion to the children according to Dr Varma if the water in the bottle was filled up to its neck and it is put on a printed paper, the prints would appear very small. But if the bottle is filled up to its rim the print would appear in bigger shape. This is because of the circular motion of the water in the bottle.