Friday, July 10, 2015

Animating and Physics

I just realized that, while my title has both animation and education, this has been fairly one sided.  So, for my new Exploratorium followers that I name dropped this blog to (Hi!), this is for you.

First, the basics of animation.  A really great video to start with is a Ted Talk on animation.  It shows some cool examples of different types, because I feel people forget that animation is not just Mickey Mouse.

What I do in my class is show them the basics of animation and then talk about vectors.  The powerpoint, as I went over it in a demo, needs a lot of work, but the basic idea is fun.  Students need to be able to add the velocity vectors to the bouncing ball path as well as acceleration vectors.  A common issue with acceleration in this case is that students forget what acceleration they're really working with and which direction.  After this assessment, they seemed to understand better about vectors and gravity.
Animation Presentation
1.  Introduce animation
2.  Discuss vectors
3.  Practice with bouncing ball
4.  Add colorful vectors to bouncing ball

What you end up with is some really cool artwork for the classroom.
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