This simulation-based activity for middle school was developed to help students build a foundation to understand basic wave properties. It was created by a middle school teacher to be used specifically with the PhET simulation "Wave on a String". It guides learners in data collection as they explore amplitude, wavelength, and frequency. Included are lesson plans, pre-lab concept questions, an inquiry-based partner activity (Day 1), and step-by-step student guide for the Day 2 computer simulation activity. This author was awarded the PhET Gold Star for excellence. The wave simulation, which must be open and displayed to complete this activity, is available from PhET at: Wave on a String. This lesson is part of PhET (Physics Education Technology Project), a large collection of free interactive simulations for science education.


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Update Standards?

CCSS.Math.Content.7.RP.A: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Analyze proportional relationships and use them to solve real-world and mathematical problems.

CCSS.Math.Content.7.RP.A.2: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Recognize and represent proportional relationships between quantities.

CCSS.Math.Content.7.RP.A.2a: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Decide whether two quantities are in a proportional relationship, e.g., by testing for equivalent ratios in a table or graphing on a coordinate plane and observing whether the graph is a straight line through the origin.

CCSS.Math.Content.6.EE.C: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Represent and analyze quantitative relationships between dependent and independent variables.

CCSS.Math.Content.6.EE.C.9: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Use variables to represent two quantities in a real-world problem that change in relationship to one another; write an equation to express one quantity, thought of as the dependent variable, in terms of the other quantity, thought of as the independent variable. Analyze the relationship between the dependent and independent variables using graphs and tables, and relate these to the equation.

CCSS.Math.Content.8.F.A: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Define, evaluate, and compare functions.

CCSS.Math.Content.8.F.A.2: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Compare properties of two functions each represented in a different way (algebraically, graphically, numerically in tables, or by verbal descriptions).

CCSS.Math.Content.8.F.B: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Use functions to model relationships between quantities.

CCSS.Math.Content.8.F.B.5: Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

Describe qualitatively the functional relationship between two quantities by analyzing a graph (e.g., where the function is increasing or decreasing, linear or nonlinear). Sketch a graph that exhibits the qualitative features of a function that has been described verbally.
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