Playground Physics: Discovering Physics Through Play

a young girl on a swing

Physics is often considered one of the most difficult types of science to study. This type of subject matter would be especially difficult for visual learners to grasp, as these individuals typically rely on visual cues and relations when learning. And with physics, these concepts are abstract and difficult to visualize, and the subject matter and experiments typically deal with unseen forces. The app that we are looking at today seeks to makes those unseen forces seen.

Playground Physics is designed to help students discover and explore the physics of their own movements. Here’s how it works. First, users record (or choose) a video. Then, users open the app and select the video they want to use. Next, a path of motion can be traced by tapping points along the video. Finally, the student will input measurements (e.g. the height or weight of an object), and the app will then calculate the data and provide an accurate assessment of the students’ performance.

The app gives users access to video scrubbing tools, so students can carefully examine their performance, or the performance of whomever they are watching. Students can also add interactive graphs on top of the video. These synchronized graphs display relevant information such as distance travelled and speed. These tools not only add to the understanding of the physics of a movement, but also serve as a performance-monitoring tool for young athletes, thus adding an extra level of motivation for the physical side of things. This melding of mental and physical athletics is where the app really shines.

Playground Physics has other interesting features that are also worth noting. Students can add stickers to mark or highlight particular moments of a performance. Videos can be saved in chunks, as a whole, with data overlays, etc., so users have many options in regards to how they want the final video to appear. Performances can be uploaded or shared through a variety of apps and cloud services, so no matter what, students will be able to find a share method that works.

Playground Physics is available free for iOS. Click here to learn more.

This post originally appeared on the AT Help Desk website.

Tags: apps, AT HelpDesk

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