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Abstract Title: An Effective Teaching/Learning Intervention On Time Dilation Effect and Relativistic Dynamics
Abstract: An educational path on relativistic dynamics for upper-secondary students was designed and experimented. It aims at building conceptual understanding of relativistic momentum and kinetic energy; it exploits thought experiments and historically relevant ones, illustrates scientific modeling by induction and draws on relativistic invariant quantities. A simulation of light-clock was run, for constructing representations of time dilation effect. As for global learning the path effectiveness was assessed by comparing pre- and post-test. General interpretive written questions were asked during the teaching/learning process to find out intermediate explanatory models, reasoning patterns, problem solving skills in similar contexts. The analysis of interplay between the former and the latter sequence of replies is presented. Results indicate sharp conceptual change about (i) the meaning of kinetic energy, (ii) its mathematical expression and (iii) its increase ad infinitum. The ideas on (iv) light-speed's role in mechanics and (v) time interval invariance evolved significantly towards scientific conceptions.
Abstract Type: Contributed Poster Presentation

Author/Organizer Information

Primary Contact: Emanuele Pugliese
Department of Chemistry, Physics and Environmental Sciences, Udine University
Via delle Scienze 206
Udine, Non U.S. 33100
Phone: +390432558231
and Co-Presenter(s)
Lorenzo Santi
Department of Chemistry, Physics and Environmental Sciences, Udine University,  Via delle Scienze 206,
Udine, UD 33100 - Italy

Contributed Paper

Contributed Paper: Download the Contributed Paper