Name of App: SimplePhysics
Free or Fee: Free! (For a limited time)
Rating: 5/5 stars
Why I like it: SimplePhysics is a fun way to explore the great world of physics! It is composed of levels and each level has the user building a structure using a blueprint design that must hold a pre-determined amount of weight. Once the structure is built, it is put to the test by slowly adding the weight. If the structure does not collapse, the user moves onto the next level, otherwise, modifications need to be made until the structure can support the weight. For an adding twist, each bar added to the structure cost money and the user must stay under budget. If the cost exceeds the budget for the given level, the cost tracker turns red and bars must be removed to bring the cost within budget. The two most helpful options to use while building the structures are:
1. Finger test- allows the user to place force on parts of the structure to see how stable it is.
2. Colored bars- the building bars go from blue to green and as weight is added areas that are under stress turn red. This allows user to see areas of weakness within the structure.
3. Email- send your blueprint structure to friends/teacher/parents to show them what you have come up with- or for assistance.
SimplePhysics is a great accompaniment to students learning about Newton’s Laws. Students can work individually or in teams to come up with solutions to building the structures then email them to teacher. Students/teams can make predictions about which type of structure will be the most sturdy and why. They can also compare their various trials to help identify which type of structure is better. Prizes could even be awarded to the individual or team that completes all the levels or the fewest attempts made per level. Allow students to apply their physics knowledge by using SimplePhysics!
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