Lot’s o’ Lazers!

Hello! This blog post is the summary and story of my latest Scimatics project, Laser Laws. This project was about learning about the Pythagorean Theorem and then applying that to make a laser display of a right angle triangle. The Driving Question for this project was “How can we test the Pythagorean Theorem and the Law of Reflection?” My group members for this project were Jackson, Caitlin, and Kai.

The first thing we did in this project was look at the launch folder and start working on our mind map. A mind map is something were you put an idea in the middle of a sheet (in our case that was laser laws) and then put ideas and thoughts off. It’s just a way to brainstorm. Then we did something really fun. We were given a laser, a small white bucket, a mirror and some barriers made of wood. What we were to do is put our bucket somewhere and use the barriers to protect it. Then the other team would use there laser and mirror to try to hit it. Mid way through setting the bucket up I had a revaluation. Because of the type of desk we had in our classroom we could jam the bucket underneath a desk and use the barriers to made it near impossible. When both teaks had it set up we look turns setting up firing lasers. Because of the what we were using to make laser still we were able to aim before firing. Now that everyone was ready it was time to fire them! Our team hit it on the first try! But then someone bumped it and the teacher said we had missed! This was terrible! What if the other team hit ours because of the blunder! They aimed, fired… and missed thankfully! We shot again and hit it. Now it was time to do this with our partner class across the hall. Again my team found a great spot. On top off a ledge two meters off the ground! Obviously we won that and completed the first step of a PLP project: Launch.

When doing Building Knowledge in Scimatics we just read and study text and workbooks. I’m not complaining, its a nice break from all the group project chaos of other classes. What does suck about it though is when we have to do the blog post. There barely anything to say that’s interesting. I’ll just give you a run down on what Pythagorean Theorem and the Law of Reflection, ok? Cool. Pythagorean Theorem is a²+b²=c². It is used to see if a triangle is a perfect right angle one. The a, b, and c are variables and you need to replace them with numbers from your triangle. The order of the a and b doesn’t matter, but the c needs to be the hypotenuse (the longest side of a right-angled triangle), or what you think is a hypotenuse if you aren’t sure if its a right triangle. After you have put in your numbers you square them. This means you multiply them by themselves. After that you add them, then you have to find the square root of them and the c. The ² on the c cancels out the square root so it’s now just c. Now you have a number equaling the c. Now that is just one way to use the Pythagorean Theorem and there are other ways to apply it. Now the Law of Reflection. The Law of Reflection states that if a line of light hits a plane mirror it will be reflected at the same angle. Thats not a perfect definition but that’s the gist of it. Now with that MATH out of the way its time to…

…get sick and not be able to help your group the ONE time what we’re doing is in real life. What my group did (or lack there off according to Jackson) was make a cardboard boat, put a coloured piece of paper on cardboard and pick a theme. Now if you think I’m being mean to my group, it was actually Jackson who said this (I paraphrased still). I actually helped with the theme. We ended up choosing the ocean. When I did come in, me and Jackson got some good work done. I got all the measurements down while he worked on the look and the lasers. He helped me with drawing the triangle with pencil to be able to see it if the lasers were off. Kai actually worked on getting some fish to colour and put on the cardboard. The finale class for working on it I was sick again, but Jackson, Caitlin, and Kai got it done. The day that we showed it off with the lasers I was able to be there. What we did was turn on the lasers and then spray some smoke. We had to use smoke because otherwise our naked eyes wouldn’t be able to see them. After that we were assigned this expect blog post which brings us to now. What are we going to do in the next two days of Scimatics? I don’t know. But this is due soon so I need to post it.

The last but not least that I’m going to talk about is my Curricular Competencies. This is the rubric for which I am being graded. I will add a picture so you know what I’m talking about. I think in the first two I am proficient. I almost always am on task in class. And I also created my project successfully that represented the Law of Reflection and the Pythagorean Theorem. I think I maybe could do that I little better because I was off be about 1 degree but over all I think it was good. The final one however I think I was not as good. I did my best best to help my group with the design of the laser display, however I was sick for most of the days that we had to work on it. I asked if there was anything I could do but there wasn’t anything. But when I did get there I did a lot of work. I worked out all the math for our triangle and the Theorem. I did have some difficultly getting one of my group members to do any work. Part of this was my fault because I couldn’t think of anything for them to work on. Splitting up work is definitely something I should work on.

See ya around and goodbye, Judah G!