Well, we finally finished the Circuit ILD. The last set of circuit predictions was a parallel circuit with 3 different resistors all on separate branches. The prediction was about comparing the voltmeters across each resistor. I like this one because it plays on the students wanting the smallest resistor to have the smallest potential difference across it, BUT it is a purely parallel circuit. Those groups that drew an electric potential diagram had no problem correctly predicting that the potential difference values were all the same.
As a bonus question, and just to make things interesting… I asked a final bonus question. It was asking the students to predict the how the values on the given meters would change when one resistor is removed… a pretty classic conceptual question.
The middle resistor (R3) was disconnected. The student groups were asked to explain how each meter changed (increased, decreased, or no change). To make the question more interesting, I turned it into a “Final Jeopardy’ style question. Each group could wager any number of points they had earned though out the entire activity. In my humble (or not so humble) opinion, this was GENIUS. All of a sudden, groups that had no change to win, were back in it! The group had to get all 5 meters correct to earn the wager points. I shot some video as the students worked on the problem:
And yes… I did have the jeopardy theme playing on a continuous loop in the background as they worked. Genius, absolute genius.
This group is catching up to what the Advanced groups are working through. Today they took the equivalent resistance assessment and started the Circuits ILD. For the most part, the version we work on with this group is the same. We add a circuit or two so the conceptual jumps are not quite so big.