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Module 3: Waves and Thermodynamics – Unit Plan

Jayden B. Lach

Western Sydney University

102090: Secondary Curriculum 2A – 2H, 2019


Module 3: Waves and Thermodynamics – Unit Plan

Part A: Unit of Work

Module 3: Waves and Thermodynamics | Stage 6 | Physics

Summary Context Duration

Module 3 is included approximately half-way The school in which this unit will be 5 weeks
through the Year 11 Physics course. delivered is a public school from a low-mid
Throughout the unit, students will study socioeconomic area in western Sydney. The
waves, including the ray model of light. class has a mix of students of average ability,
Students also build upon their introduction to with 2 students that may require additional
thermodynamics from stage 5, including work/resources due to their knowledge of the
studying energy transfer as heat. topics being slightly more advanced than the
rest of the class.

Content Focus
Wave motion involves the transfer of energy without the transfer of matter. By exploring the behaviour of wave motion and examining the
characteristics of wavelength, frequency, period, velocity and amplitude, students further their understanding of the properties of waves. They
are then able to demonstrate how waves can be reflected, refracted, diffracted and superposed (interfered) and to develop an understanding
that not all waves require a medium for their propagation. Students examine mechanical waves and electromagnetic waves, including their
similarities and differences.
Students also examine energy and its transfer, in the form of heat, from one place to another. Thermodynamics is the study of the relationship
between energy, work, temperature and matter. Understanding this relationship allows students to appreciate particle motion within objects.
Students have the opportunity to examine how hot objects lose energy in three ways: first, by conduction, and, second, by convection – which
both involve the motion of particles; and, third, the emission of electromagnetic radiation. An understanding of thermodynamics is a pathway
to understanding related concepts in many fields involving Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

Working Scientifically Focus

In this module, students focus on conducting investigations, collecting and processing data and information, interpreting trends in data and
communicating scientific ideas about waves and thermodynamics. Students should be provided with opportunities to engage with all the
Working Scientifically skills throughout the course.

Skills Outcomes Knowledge and Understanding Outcomes

PH11/12-3: conducts investigations to collect valid and reliable PH11-10: explains and analyses waves and the transfer of energy by
primary and secondary data and information sound, light and thermodynamic principles
• employ and evaluate safe work practices and manage risks
• use appropriate technologies to ensure and evaluate accuracy

PH11/12-4: selects and processes appropriate qualitative and

quantitative data and information using a range of appropriate media
• select qualitative and quantitative data and information and
represent them using a range of formats, digital technologies
and appropriate media (ACSPH004, ACSPH007, ACSPH064,
• apply quantitative processes where appropriate

PH11/12-6: solves scientific problems using primary and secondary

data, critical thinking skills and scientific processes
• use modelling (including mathematical examples) to explain
phenomena, make predictions and solve problems using
evidence from primary and secondary sources (ACSPH006,
• use scientific evidence and critical thinking skills to solve

PH11/12-7: communicates scientific understanding using suitable

language and terminology for a specific audience or purpose
• select and use suitable forms of digital, visual, written and/or
oral forms of communication
• construct evidence-based arguments and engage in peer
feedback to evaluate an argument or conclusion (ACSPH034,

• Ray model of light
• Thermodynamics

Key Inquiry Questions

1. What properties can be demonstrated when using the ray model of light?
2. How are temperature, thermal energy, and particle motion related?

Assessment Overview
Assessment FOR Learning Assessment AS Learning Assessment OF Learning
Diagnostic testing will be undertaken before Throughout the unit, some practical No formal assessment will be undertaken
starting each new inquiry question (see investigations will be designed by the during the course of this unit. However,
Appendix A for an example). Other strategies students, where they will design a method for content from this unit will be assessable in
will include informal discussions between the their investigation, perform the experiment/s, the yearly examination as assessment task 3.
teacher and students, either individually or in and reflect on their methods and results, and
small groups to establish their understanding make modifications to their method, before
of content, in addition to marking students’ performing the new version/s of their
books (classwork and practical investigation, to improve their results, if time
investigations) throughout the unit, including permits.
leaving feedback, and revisiting concepts if
students have trouble understanding the
concepts. Formative peer assessment can also
be undertaken during group work, where
students discuss their work with the other
members of the group, in order to solidify
their knowledge.

Literacy Focus Numeracy Focus ICT Focus

Students will develop literacy skills through Students will develop numeracy skills Students will develop ICT skills mostly by
recording steps for whole-class practical through solving problems relating to the ray analyzing the data from their investigations
investigations, as well as in the design and model of light and thermodynamics, as well using spreadsheets or other software that is
modifications of their own investigations for as quantitatively predicting the outcome/s of required for certain dataloggers and sensors.
some concepts. This should also include practical investigations and analyzing the Students will also be able to access
recording any results and observations, as results of their investigations. simulations of some experiments to solidify
well as any discussion topics that they find the concepts, or in place of working
interesting. equipment. Other uses of ICT throughout this
unit include researching concepts when
required, as well as writing up practical

Inquiry Question: What properties can be demonstrated when using the ray model of light?
K & U Content WS Teaching and Learning Strategies Extension or Adjustment Resources
Descriptor Outcome
Students: PH11/12-3 • Students use “Phet interactive • For extra instruction, • Students will
• conduct a practical PH11/12-4 simulations: Geometric optics” students may wish to need access to
investigation to PH11/12-6 (Version 2.05) simulation to view additional a device that
analyse the PH11/12-7 visualize the effects of changing material from Khan has the Adobe
formation of variables for a concave lens, and Academy – Geometric Flash Player
images in mirrors what happens to the light rays as Optics (n.d.-a), or the plugin installed
and lenses via a result Module 3 series from for the
reflection and • Practical – Students use convex the High School simulation
refraction using and concave lenses to form real Physics Explained
the ray model of images from a phone (or similar) (n.d.) channel on Materials:
light (ACSPH075) onto a white sheet/cardboard, YouTube. • Convex lenses
and observe the changes to the • Concave lenses
image as the lenses, sheet, and • Phone for
image are moved around image
• Practical – Students use a • White
toothpick (or similar) and a sheet/cardboard
mirror to determine the distance • Toothpick
of an object projected on the • Pins
mirror. Refer to Gozzard (2016, • Mirror
October 14) for further • Light box (see
explanation. An alternative for The Physics
more advanced classes would be Classroom,
to provide students with a 2010,
variety of mirrors of differing September 30)
shapes, and asking them to
• Concave mirror
determine which mirror/s to use,

and how to find the angle of

incidence and reflection.
• Demonstration – The teacher
uses a light box and a mirror to
form a real, inverted image of a
light bulb. Refer to The Physics
Classroom (2010, September 30)
for the setup explanation.

Students: PH11/12-3 • Demonstration – Students • For extra instruction, • Students will

• conduct PH11/12-4 observe the disappearing coin students may wish to need access to
investigations to PH11/12-6 under a beaker due to refraction. view additional a device for the
examine PH11/12-7 The coin is placed under the material from Khan simulation
qualitatively and beaker and the beaker filled with Academy – Geometric • The guided
quantitatively the water. The coin can then be seen Optics (n.d.-a), or the activity (Lees,
refraction and total if placed inside the beaker, or Module 3 series from 2017) will need
internal reflection when placed underneath the the High School to be
of light beaker with water whilst wet. Physics Explained distributed to
(ACSPH075, Refer to mlinnenb (2010, (n.d.) channel on students
ACSPH076) October 20) for reference. YouTube.
• Practical – Students use a laser Materials:
• solve problems or or a ray box to shine light • Students requiring • Coin
make quantitative through different prisms and extension, can be given • Large beaker
predictions in a observe what happens to the ray solids with a ‘mystery’ • Water
variety of of light as it passes through each refractive index, and • Laser
situations by medium. In addition to the asked to determine the • Ray box
applying the prisms, students are able to shine refractive index based • Prisms with
following a laser through jelly to observe on experimentation various
relationships to: the refraction also. refractive
o 𝑛𝑛𝑥𝑥 = for • Students use “Phet interactive • Students requiring indexes
simulations: Bending Light” adjustment should be
(Version 1.1.16) in conjunction given scaffolded

refractive with the above practical to show questions, as well as • Jelly (cut into
index of how different mediums change always having the different
medium 𝑥𝑥, the refraction of the light. formulae on hand when shapes)
𝑣𝑣𝑥𝑥 is the Students should also work attempting questions.
speed of through the guided activity Extra assistance may
light in the (Lees, 2017) that accompanies be required if students’
medium the simulation algebra skills are not at
• Students solve problems using an acceptable standard
• predict given values for the speed of to complete tasks.
quantitatively, light in a medium (𝑣𝑣𝑥𝑥 ) or the
using Snell’s Law, refractive index of an object.
the refraction and Students can also check their
total internal work using “Phet interactive
reflection of light simulations: Bending Light”
in a variety of (Version 1.1.16)
situations • Students predict, and
subsequently test their
• solve problems or predictions of refraction of light
make quantitative using Snell’s law given prisms
predictions in a of different refractive indexes.
variety of Students can also solve problems
situations by given the 3 out of 4 variables in
applying the the Snell’s law equation
following (𝑛𝑛1 𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝜃𝜃1 = 𝑛𝑛2 𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝑠𝜃𝜃2), and draw
relationships to: the diagrams for all problems
o 𝑛𝑛1 sin 𝜃𝜃1 = • Students practice finding the
𝑛𝑛2 sin 𝜃𝜃2 critical angle for total internal
(Snell’s reflection, for different mediums
Law) where values of 𝑛𝑛 are given, and
o sin 𝜃𝜃𝑐𝑐 = 𝑛𝑛2 then complete the worksheet
from Bail, Hore, and Joosten
(2018, pp. 111-112)

Students: PH11/12-3 • Practical – Students use a light No adjustments should be Materials:

• conduct a practical box and a prism to show the needed for this practical • Light box
investigation to dispersion of light through a • Prism
demonstrate and medium AND/OR shining • White
explain the different light sources on CD’s sheet/cardboard
phenomenon of the at different angles to show the • CD’s
dispersion of light spectrum of light from different • Different light
sources sources (LED
globe, energy
saving globe
Students: PH11/12-3 • Practical – Students use a light • For extra instruction, • Students will
• conduct an PH11/12-4 sensor to determine the intensity students may wish to need access to
investigation to PH11/12-6 of light from a source such as a view additional a device that
demonstrate the phone or globe over even material from Khan has spreadsheet
relationship increments. Students then graph Academy – Geometric capabilities
between inverse the Intensity vs Distance to show Optics (n.d.-a), or the
square law, the the inverse square curve. Module 3 series from Materials:
intensity of light Students then show that 𝐼𝐼 ∝ the High School • Light sensor
and the transfer of 1 Physics Explained • Light source
𝑟𝑟2 by showing that the curve for
energy 1 (n.d.) channel on • Ruler
(ACSPH077) Intensity vs 2 is linear. Students YouTube.
𝑟𝑟 • Cardboard
are able to use the video tutorial • For some students, the • Grid paper
• solve problems or (see Appendix B) for further cardboard may need to
make quantitative explanation of how to do this have a hole already cut
predictions in a using a spreadsheet to size if they are
variety of • Practical – Students shine a unable to cut for
situations by light through a small hole in a themselves
applying the piece of cardboard on to a sheet • Students may need
of grid paper. Students can additional help with

following observe the inverse square law manipulating the

relationships to: by moving the light and equations to find the
o 𝐼𝐼1 𝑟𝑟12 = cardboard further from the grid desired value, and may
𝐼𝐼2 𝑟𝑟22 - to to show the area that is needed to be given scaffolding to
compare ‘catch’ the same amount of light. help achieve the
the Refer to the Exploratorium (n.d.) desired results
intensity of practical for further explanation
light at two • Students solve problems relating
points, 𝑟𝑟1 to the intensity of light, given 3
and 𝑟𝑟2 out of 4 values of the formula
𝐼𝐼1 𝑟𝑟12 = 𝐼𝐼2 𝑟𝑟22 , and show
mathematically how much the
intensity of light changes when
the light source is changed
(doubled, tripled, etc.) such as
from Dommel et al. (2018, pp.

Inquiry Question: How are temperature, thermal energy, and particle motion related?
K & U Content WS Teaching and Learning Strategies Extension or Adjustment Resources
Descriptor Outcome
Students: PH11/12-4 • Diagnostic test to be administered to • Students may be • Volume vs
• explain the PH11/12-7 review students’ understanding of given a pre-drawn Temperature
relationship the kinetic theory of matter from graph of volume vs graph of
between the pervious stages temperature for various gases
temperature of an • Demonstration – showing the some known gases, similar to the
object and the effects of heat on balloon (ice vs and asked to find graphs from
kinetic energy of room temp vs boiling)??? – hand- the relationship Chemistry
the particles within boilers etc. could be done as quick between them. LibreTexts
it (ACSPH018) practical Students should be (2015, Figure
• Teacher led introduction to the able to show that 6.2.3) OR for
• explain the concept Kelvin scale, and the concept of the trend is linear a simpler
of thermal absolute zero. A plot of Volume vs. towards absolute version from
equilibrium Temperature of gases to be shown zero Dommel et al.
(ACSPH022) (and drawn by students) that has (2005, p. 304).
been extrapolated linearly to • Students may be
absolute zero to visualize the given a graph with
proportionality of volume and pre-drawn axes if Materials:
temperature of gases. time is an issue, or • Balloons
• In small groups, students should they are not • Ice water
devise a strategy to teach the kinetic confident in • Boiling water
theory of matter to stage 4 students, graphing yet • Trays for
including drawing models of solids, water
liquids, and gases, as well as • For extra • Ice cubes
explaining what happens to the instruction, • Thermal
particles as heat is applied to the students may wish imaging
object/s. to view additional camera
• Demonstration – Students watch material from Khan
ice melt into warm water using a Academy –

thermal imaging camera to visualize Thermodynamics

thermal equilibrium (n.d.-b), or the
• Define the zeroth law of Module 3 series
thermodynamics where if two from the High
objects are in thermal equilibrium School Physics
with a third object, then all three Explained (n.d.)
objects are in thermal equilibrium channel on
with each other and objects in YouTube.
thermal equilibrium must be at the
same temperature

Students: PH11/12-3 • Define the first law of • For extra Materials:

• analyse the PH11/12-4 thermodynamics where energy instruction, • Beakers
relationship PH11/12-6 cannot be created nor destroyed students may wish • Water
between the change PH11/12-7 • Practical – Students heat various to view additional • Thermometers
in temperature of an volumes of water for a set period of material from Khan • Bunsen Burner
object and its time (~3-4 minutes each) and record Academy – • Tripod
specific heat the temperature at even increments. Thermodynamics • Cooking oil
capacity through Students should graph the results, (n.d.-b), or the • Graph paper
the equation and deduce that the mass of the Module 3 series
𝑄𝑄=𝑚𝑚𝑚𝑚Δ𝑇𝑇 object affects how quickly it is from the High
(ACSPH020) heated School Physics
• Given the specific heat capacity of Explained (n.d.)
water, students are to calculate the channel on
• apply the following change in heat energy for each YouTube.
relationships to volume of water from their practical • For some
solve problems and • Practical – Students heat identical students/classes, it
make quantitative volumes of cooking oil and water may be more
predictions in a and record the temperature at even suitable to perform
variety of increments. Students should then this as a
situations: graph the results, and deduce that demonstration, and
show the results on

o 𝑄𝑄=𝑚𝑚𝑚𝑚Δ𝑇𝑇, water has a higher specific heat the board for class
where c is capacity than cooking oil analysis
the specific • Students solve various problems • Some students may
heat using 𝑄𝑄 = 𝑚𝑚𝑚𝑚Δ𝑇𝑇 to calculate heat require additional
capacity of a energy, mass, specific heat capacity, assistance with
substance and the change in temperature for manipulating
various given values equations
• Students solve various problems • Students can
related to energy transfer in a closed discuss the
system using (𝑚𝑚𝑚𝑚Δ𝑇𝑇)1 = (𝑚𝑚𝑚𝑚Δ𝑇𝑇)2 variables that may
affect the accuracy
of the experiment
compared to
theoretical values
(i.e. heat lost to the
different Bunsen
burner, different
containers etc.)
• Graph paper with
pre-drawn axes
may be provided
for some students
or if time is limited

Students: PH11/12-3 • Practical – Students boil water in a • For extra Materials:

• investigate energy PH11/12-4 large beaker/bowl, and using three instruction, • Large beaker
transfer by the PH11/12-6 large spoons (metal, plastic, and students may wish • Water
process of: PH11/12-7 wooden) place the spoons into the to view additional • Spoons (metal,
–conduction water handle down. Butter is placed material from Khan plastic,
–convection in the bowl of the spoon, and Academy – wooden)
students observe the conduction of Thermodynamics • Butter

–radiation the materials as the butter melts OR (n.d.-b), or the • Bunsen

(ACSPH016) heating a conductivity ring with wax Module 3 series burner/hotplate
drops to observe the conductivity of from the High • Conductivity
• model and predict different materials School Physics ring
quantitatively • Practical – Students model Explained (n.d.) • Wax drops
energy transfer convection by heating water with channel on • Rice
from hot objects by either rice or potassium YouTube. • Potassium
the process of permanganate and observing the • For all practical’s, permanganate
thermal convection current students can predict • Coloured test
conductivity • Practical – Students test radiation the outcome of the tubes or
as a source of energy transfer by experiment, and Aluminium
• apply the following shining heat lamps (or other heat provide a reason for cans
relationships to source) at different coloured test their predictions • Thermometers
solve problems and tubes (or coloured Aluminium cans) before performing
• Heat lamps (or
make quantitative with thermometers inside them. the experiments
other heat
predictions in a Students should take measurements • If there is a lack of source)
variety of at even increments, and graph the equipment, or if
• Ice cubes
situations: results students are unable
• Aluminium
• Demonstration – Students predict to use the
𝑡𝑡 𝑑𝑑 block
which material (possibly Aluminium equipment, the
where 𝑘𝑘 is • Plastic or glass
block and plastic or glass block)will practicals may be
the thermal block
cause an ice cube to melt the fastest. required to be
This demonstration can take a performed as a
of a material
similar form to a video from demonstration
Veritasium (2012, August 24). • Students may • Thermal
require extra conductivity
• Students to solve problems related
scaffolding that is problems
to thermal conductivity, using but
not present on the worksheet (see
not limited to questions from a
worksheet. This Appendix C)
worksheet (see Appendix C).
may include
detailing how to

equations to make
each variable the
subject of the
• For extension,
students may come
up with their own
scenarios for
problems (with
worked answers) to
be completed by
any student willing
to complete

Students: PH11/12-3 • Students are given the graph of the • Students can solve • Heating curve
• conduct an PH11/12-4 heating curve of water, and explain problems of water
investigation to PH11/12-6 that there is no temperature combining the printout
analyse PH11/12-7 increase/decrease during a change of heating and/or • Practical
qualitatively and state cooling of an object worksheet
quantitatively the • Practical – Students determine the to its melting from skills
latent heat involved latent heat of fusion of water using and/or boiling workbook
in a change of state calorimetry, and complete the points, and its (Bail, Hore, &
associated worksheet from the skills latent heat of fusion Joosten, 2018,
workbook (Bail, Hore, & Joosten, and/or pp. 133-135)
2018, pp. 133-135) OR students vapourisation
heat ice over a Bunsen burner until • Students may need Materials:
the ice melts, and subsequently additional • Thermometer
boils, taking temperature readings at assistance • 600mL
every minute, and graphing the manipulating the beakers
results equations to find

• Students solve problems involving the desired • Calorimetry

the latent heat of fusion, and answer/s cup
vapourisation of substances using • For extra • Electronic
𝑄𝑄 = 𝑚𝑚𝐿𝐿𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓𝑓 and 𝑄𝑄 = 𝑚𝑚𝐿𝐿𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣𝑣 instruction, balance
students may wish • Hotplate
to view additional • Stirring rod
material from the • Water
Module 3 series • Ice cubes
from the High • Paper towel
School Physics
Explained (n.d.)
channel on

Evaluation (Questions you would ask yourself/students in order to assess your unit of work)
• Did you find the work too easy/too hard?
• What topic/s do you feel you learnt the best?
• What topic/s do you feel you know the least?
• What would you have liked to learn more about?
• Do you feel comfortable with the amount you learnt during this unit?
• If there was a depth study to be made from this unit, what part/s would you like to study deeper?

• What part/s could be improved for future classes?
• What part/s did the students seem to enjoy the most?
• Are you comfortable with the amount your students learned throughout the unit?
• What resources need to be changed for the future?

Part B: Critical Discussion

By studying physics, we can gain a better understanding of the world around us

(Cornell University Physics Teacher Education Coalition [PhysTEC], 2011; NSW Education

Standards Authority [NESA], 2018). With the shift in focus of the physics curriculum toward

an inquiry style approach (NESA, 2018), students are provided more freedom in their

learning, with teachers aiding them to find meaning in the concepts (Krajcik, 2015). This

approach, when combined effectively with direct, and guided instruction strategies, has been

suggested to benefit students’ learning (Mayer, 2004), and allows students to explore and

appreciate the physical world around them.

Although the physics curriculum has moved toward an inquiry approach to learning,

in order for the content to be accessible to students, the learning experiences must be

authentic and relatable for the students (Brown, Collins, & Duguid, 1989; Lee & Songer,

2003). Traditionally, learning science in schools comes in the form of lectures,

demonstrations, and carefully prepared experiments that seldom test students’ scientific skills

such as planning investigations, as well as devising and conveying their conclusions from

experimentation (Lee & Songer, 2003). In the past, creating opportunities for these science

skills has been difficult, since real-world science problems are often too broad, and

necessitate deeper content knowledge that students are expected to possess (Edelson, 1998).

Although this unit does not include a depth study, the inclusion of depth studies in the new

syllabus will allow students to explore concepts of interest to a greater depth than they would

have previously, and apply their knowledge to novel experiences (NESA, n.d.-c, n.d.-b). By

allowing students to develop their own learning (NESA, n.d.-c), depth studies allow students

to transform the abstract concepts and skills of physics, into meaningful inquiry (Lee &

Songer, 2003) to consolidate their learning (NESA, n.d.-c). However, an issue with teaching

physics by inquiry, is whether the way an experiment is structured will be “self-evident”


(Rutherford, 1964, p. 84), such is not the case for determining the angles of incidence and

reflection using mirrors and Snell’s law by traditional school experiments. Stage 6 students,

with some guidance from the teachers, should develop their investigation skills by developing

their own methods to discover phenomena for themselves, allowing students to experience

what science ‘is’ (Edelson, Gordin, & Pea, 1999; Lee & Songer, 2003; Rutherford, 1964).

Despite, the many benefits of learning science through pure inquiry, a combination of

direct instruction, and guided inquiry has been suggested to benefit students more than pure

inquiry (Mayer, 2004). The blending of these pedagogies allows shallow levels of knowledge

to develop, whilst promoting deeper learning (Hattie & Donoghue, 2016) through the

application of students’ knowledge in their investigations (Dalton, Morocco, Tivnan, &

Rawson Mead, 1997). Although not explicitly stated in the program, this unit achieves this

combination through direct instruction of new concepts, as well as providing guidance for the

mathematical concepts, particularly where the derivations or manipulations of formulae may

not be intuitive and inquiry through students’ investigative practicals.

One recommendation from the Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for

Young Australians (Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth

Affairs, 2008) is the increased use of ICT as a tool for students’ learning. The above unit of

study lends itself to the use of ICT through the use of simulations for students understanding,

as well as student research, and the capturing and analysis of data. Through the use of ICT,

students may be more motivated to learn associated content than by studying using more

traditional pedagogies (Campbell, Wang, Hsu, Duffy, & Wolf, 2010). To achieve the added

engagement from ICT, activities and pedagogies must meet the increased ICT literacy skills

of the students as digital natives (Campbell et al., 2010; Clarke & Besnoy, 2009). The use of

simulations throughout the unit as an interactive visualisation tool allows for students to

consolidate their theoretical and experimental knowledge, and to better see the phenomena

that is to be explored though experimentation (Podolefsky, Perkins, & Adams, 2010).

Further, simulations can be used where there is insufficient or failing equipment to perform

an experiment, allowing students to still experience the phenomena being studied.

Ensuring students are learning at the desired rate, formative assessment will be

employed throughout the unit in various forms. Students will also be required to reflect upon

the design of their experimental procedures, and make modifications to their experiment to

improve their results as a form of assessment as learning. Integrating assessment as learning

into the unit, encourages students to take accountability for their own success as learners,

inspires self-reflection, and provides a platform for growth by achieving learning goals set by

the teacher and student (NESA, n.d.-a). To encourage student growth through formative

assessment activities, corrective feedback must be provided to the student, and should be

delivered in a way that students find meaningful (Suurtamm et al., 2016), in order to

maximise student achievement. Further increasing the efficacy of the feedback to students,

Baird, Hopfenbeck, Newton, Stobart, and Steen-Utheim (2014) suggest aligning all feedback

to the syllabus outcomes, which provides students greater access to improved learning

experiences. Gioka (2006) also suggests providing both strengths and weaknesses to students

regarding their work, as well as guiding students towards areas of improvement, which

should be the focus of all formative strategies throughout this unit. In addition to formative

assessment, each activity can be adjusted for a broad range of learners, by offering extra

explanations or assistance for students that are slower to understand the content, as well as

extension activities for students that grasped the concepts to a high standard, and would like

an extra challenge.

By incorporating effective ICT use, formative assessment, as well as authentic

scientific inquiry, the above unit should satisfy a broad range of learners, and allow for

sufficient and sustained deep learning of the ray model of light and elementary

thermodynamics for stage 6 learners.



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Appendix A

Diagnostic Test – Ray Model of Light

The following is a screenshot of the diagnostic test that may be administered at the beginning

of the ray model of light inquiry question. This pre-test should form some understanding of

students’ prior knowledge of the concept. The test can be found at


Figure 1: Screenshot of a pre-test for the ray model of light


Appendix B

Video Tutorial – Analysing Experimental Data to Show the Inverse Square Law

The following is a screenshot of a video tutorial made to show students how to use

spreadsheets to show the inverse square law for light intensity. This method can then be used

in the following lesson for students to analyse their data and show the inverse proportionality

for themselves. This video is available at https://youtu.be/J72m4saU1Lw

Figure 2: Screenshot of a video tutorial for the visual analysis of the inverse square law

Appendix C

Thermal Conductivity Problems

The following is a screenshot of a worksheet that was developed for the topic of thermal

conductivity. Some of the questions and information has been adapted from various sources,

including Dommel et al. (2018), Giancoli (2005), and Shadwick (2018).


Figure 3: Screenshot of a thermal conductivity worksheet