Physics 4-17-19 Harmonics & Beats

PHYSICS: So why do instruments that are playing the same note sound so different? Here’s our discussion of harmonics and beats.

Speaking of discussion – what did you think about the Tacoma Narrows Bridge? Any ideas on an explanation? Here’s a link, if you’d like to see it again: Tacoma Narrows Bridge

Photo by Roberta Sorge on Unsplash

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35 thoughts on “Physics 4-17-19 Harmonics & Beats

  1. This week I made sure I had a reminder to do my webpost before I forgot again. This week has been a pretty good week learning about sound. I thought that it would be a much harder concept to understand first looking at it, but it turns out it’s not that bad. Going to be a long weekend making sure the Goldberg project is finished up.

  2. At first, I did not understand this chapter at all. It was probably the most confused I’ve been all year. But then we went in the hall with the slinkys, and suddenly, it all came together. (You can ask Sterling and Morgan Elizabeth- it was a major “aha!” moment for me). I definitely have a better grasp now. The math for this chapter is really just “plug and chug,” so I’m going to focus on concepts. I get the broad concepts, but I am a little worried about the smaller details that I may skip over by accident.

  3. I feel pretty good about this week! The math is really simple in this chapter, so for once, I’m not going to spend hours practicing math problems. I just have to really review the conceptual stuff this time. I am a little intimidated with the Rube project being due next week, but I’m sure it’ll be fine. Have a good break, Ms. Skinner!

  4. Reality just hit I’m fixing to take my last Physics test Tuesday. I feel like I have at least another half a year of class left. I’m definitely going to miss all of the labs and design challenges. I’m a little confused about the test since we had to watch podcasts but after today’s test review it makes a lot more sense. I’m also exited to finish up our rube project and show it off next week.

  5. Happy Easter Break! This week was pretty good. I believe I understand the chapter but I’ll definitely be studying all the conceptual material and watching all the vodcasts. Beats where weird for me to understand so I’ll be look in the book to make sure that I have a better understanding on it. I’m so glad that the math is pretty easy these chapters (except for the spring ones those still trip me up) Rube is doing good so far and lab write ups need to be done. Quite a few things to do in such a short amount of time.

  6. This week has been crazy, but what’s new?? I definitely am going to have to do lots of studying in Hewitt’s conceptual physics book. This chapter is a little harder for me to wrap my head around. I’m not musically inclined so the whole idea of the instruments with different waves doesn’t come naturally to me. And now I’ve got to remember chapter 11 since it feels like it was forever ago! I know I’ll need to rewatch some vodcasts too and at some point work on rube! Happy Easter Ms. Skinner 🙂

  7. This chapter seems to be clicking well with me. Some of the concepts I was kinda confused on because I could not see the demonstrations through the vodcasts but once you came back and showed them it made a lot more sense. I’m definitely still going to have to study but I feel confident I’m gonna make a good grade on the test. Now I just have to finish up the Rube project this weekend in the meantime!

  8. This week was weird! Doing explore zone for 2 weeks and then jumping back into lectures just felt really strange! When we first started this chapter I really didn’t understand at all, which is crazy because this was suppose to be an easy one. But ive been better understanding it. For this next test I’m going to have to stuff pretty hard if I want to do well. Rube is going well we have most of our ideas down and have set up a few of them and jsut need to finish up!

  9. This week was very busy, but very fascinating! I was a bit confused at first before we started doing all the in-class demos, but now I think I’m getting the hang of it! I loved playing around with the tuning forks and feeling the vibrations of the sound boxes! The slinkies were even cooler—very neat to watch as the waves interfered and created larger and larger waves with clear nodes and anti-nodes! The visuals really helped! However, I’ve learned that in physics, whenever I feel the most comfortable, I am usually missing some major concepts. So I am definitely going to be reviewing a lot this weekend and nailing down the conceptual information. Rube is going pretty well—my group just has to nail down a couple key steps, and then, Lord willing, it will be up and running!

  10. This week felt like the calm before the storm. I know I should be working ahead for all of my assignments that are due next week, but guiltily I did not. I did not think I would enjoy this chapter as much as I am currently. It is reminding me that I don’t have to be in perfect comprehension of a chapter to enjoy it. Because it is something completely different, my Rube group was hoping to incorporate it into our project, but it so complex already we might not be able to. However, I can’t wait to put my all into this last test! Harmonics homework was rough, but I am determined to knock this test out of the ballpark and fix all of my past errors.

  11. I’ve found this new chapter very interesting and love learning new things about waves and sound! I have a ton of things to do this Easter weekend from studying for the test to getting the Rube project finished, so it’s going to be very stressful but I know I can get it all done! Hopefully this last test will be at least an averagely good grade for me!

  12. This week in Physics, I am doing my web post a tad early so I do not forget. I am getting a little nervous about Rube Goldberg, but this too shall pass. I think I exceled at the test today. I am ready for the weekend so that everything will be behind except for the lab reports. Thankfully, we are going to six flags Friday, so that will be a nice escape from the stress. Anyway, we will see how the rest of the week goes.

  13. Whew, this week has been jammed pack with physics! Between Rube, the test, and Rube, the week meant late nights, early mornings, and staying late after school. On Tuesday, Jared and I didn’t even leave the school till 5… then was the test. I don’t necessarily feel good about this test, but thankfully it is the last one! I wish I could have ended on a better note, but maybe I’ll surprise myself. I am grateful that Rube is over with and went well! We eventually got the match and sparkler to ignite, and the death star actually cracked so we quite literally destroyed it 🙂 I’m looking forward to Six Flags tomorrow!!! See you at the crack of dawn Ms. Skinner!

  14. I am very much relieved that Rube Goldberg is done with now it has been surprisingly more stressful than it was during the building stage. I am glad that we are finally done with our last test and are now finishing up with the exam. It’s been a fun but stressful week.

  15. I am SO proud of my Rube group. We worked so hard, and we planned it very carefully so that it would be as consistent as possible, and it paid off! It took 3 tries, the first failing because we forgot to push a button when setting up, the second because our first step was not properly lined up (which honestly, I would attribute to nerves), but nothing compared to the feeling of hearing (sort of), “That was easy!”. I really feel like I utilized what I’ve learned. Of course, we used physics concepts, but more than that, we used perseverance but also knew when to give up, we planned, we were methodical, and gave ourselves plenty of time. Now, we hope to be exempt!! Is this our last web post? If it is, its been an amazing two years with you Ms. Skinner! Your class has shaped me as a student, and I feel confident pursuing a research career because of what I’ve learned!

  16. This week was really something. Rube, a test, and a trip to Six Flags! Rube was just plane stressful. We could never get it to do a full run through, but it worked in the end. Having to rest the thing so many times was worth it. (And we were so happy destroying it to throw away). The test went well I think (thank you for making it open note). And Six Flags was so fun! All the rides! All the attempts to make Katie rise with us! Nearly dying on rides with Ms. Skinner and fellow classmates. What a week pack full of stuff.

  17. This week has been really stressful. I think the test went well, but Rube wore me out. Six flags on Friday was the perfect ending to such a tiring week. I can’t believe we’ve taken our last Physics test. Have a good weekend, Ms. Skinner!

  18. What a physics-packed week! With Rube on Tuesday and Thursday, the test on Wednesday, and the FUN physics Six Flags trip today (commenting from Lambert’s right now and trying not to get nailed in the head with a roll), it was quite crazy! Thank the Lord we made it! Our Rube worked, and even though I don’t think the “easy” test went too well, it was our LAST ONE, and I know that I did my best! It’s been a great year in physics, and I’m sad that it’s coming to a close… though I won’t miss the tests haha! 😉

  19. This week in physics was interesting to say the least. We worked our butt off on the rubgoldberg project and it payed off! Hard work always pays off. Ours went great and we succeeded. For the test, I study well and I feel like I did good. I ran out of time but I got a lot of extra stuff down, so hopefully that balances it out.

  20. This week in Physics sure was interesting! Rube was pretty frustrating sometimes, but I’m glad it is all over and we got it to work fairly well! Thank you so much for making the test open book! I realized I didn’t know much about standing waves or antinodes, but other than that it went well.

  21. This last test and final project took me for a loop, not as big as the ones in Sic Flags, but anxiety-ridden ones none the less. I have enjoyed this past week just because I know the effort I put in the past six days has taught me not only lessons in physics but in patience and teamwork. I love this class , and I love the teacher even more. Thank you for reading this, and I hope you have a great weekend. (Sorry you had to read this sappy, poorly written webpost the week before I Leave)

  22. This last full week of physics was quite stressful. I felt like I did okay on the test but the Rube project was very nerve racking; however, I survived! Now all I have to do is finish up my labs and then I should be good!

  23. I can’t believe that this is my LAST EVER webpost for your class!! This year has been quite a rollercoaster! In all honesty though, I wouldn’t have traded it for the world. Looking back, my senior year would have been pretty monotonous without all of the late nights, lab reports, design challenges, and very colorful test grade spectrum—always a game to see if I could actually come out with an A haha! I know now that, even though I can get extremely stressed, I need to be challenged or everyday life can fall into a bit of a boring routine. And to think that I almost backed away from the challenge of taking your class…
    I have learned SO much, and even though I am not going to be an engineer or physicist, I have loved every minute of thinking through hard problems, inventing my own lab procedures, and yes, learning from my many failures. I discovered that my habit of procrastinating does not always pay off, and yes, my energy level does have a limit. That’s something I will definitely be taking to college this semester! Thanks to your Chemistry class, I developed a love for science. But thanks to Physics, I learned how to apply scientific concepts to daily life and give explanations for why things happen all around us—absolutely so fascinating!!
    I would encourage future students to not step down from the challenge. Yes, senior year is supposed to be fun, but exploring Physics can, if you see it with the correct mindset, add to that fun! Yes, you will be stressed quite often, but persevere, pray, and try to see that joy in the challenge. You really learn a lot about yourself when you are pushing through a trial. Don’t be complacent—strive to do your best, and even when you don’t make a great grade, keep improving because it will get better! Also, make sure that you ALWAYS do Science in the News because it really helps!
    The only thing I would have done differently was starting from the get-go with trusting in Christ’s abilities to get me through—it would have saved me a lot of stress. Several times, I found myself trying to lean on my own understanding without walking with the Lord. However, when I began realizing that was happening, taking a step back and meditating on God’s Word and His promises gave me such a peace!

    Sorry for the mini essay, but this class has meant so much to me!! I love you, Ms. Skinner, and you will always be one of my favorite teachers! Thanks for challenging me my senior year and helping to make me a better person! 🙂

  24. THIS IS THE LAST EVER PHYSICS WEBPOST!!!!! I just can’t believe it… this year has truly been an amazing year of growth, not only in physics but also in my relationship with Christ. It has been full of struggles, lots and lots of struggles. I remember writing next to the rocket problem that wanted us to find the velocity that if you strap to the rocket I’d find out. Then all the unsuccessful attempts to find the solution to Zorba. Not to mention Nate and Elijah at the beginning of the year. And the feeling that we weren’t just thrown into the deep end but into shark-invested waters in the deep end of the ocean. But through it all I learned so so much. I learned how God intricately has designed this world so that there are laws and principles that apply to His creation and how everything works together. It truly is amazing how in each of our chapters and lessons you can always point back everything to our God. I am definitely not the same as I was when physics first began. Of course, I have so much more knowledge on the subject of physics, but I also went through a long journey to find where the Lord wanted me next year. At the beginning of the year, I had absolutely no idea where I would go to college or what I would do. However, He revealed to me through many many things that Baptist College is where I should be. I definitely had to have more trust in Him this year. And He confirmed that Nuclear Medicine was for me by showing me my love for physics and chemistry and helping others. Not to mention the miracles in prayer that happened for every physics test after the first one. If anyone says prayer doesn’t work, all they need to do is look at my first test and then all the others and there is a huge difference that turns out to be prayer. An army of prayer warriors prayed for each test, and I am so thankful for each of those who prayed for me. I also came closer to the Lord on test days when He would give me a beautiful sunrise to begin the day when I was freaking out and then would remind me that as the God of the universe, He is the God of physics. That is something that would give me a peace and confidence as I entered the test with all the knowledge I had gained and studied. To future physics students, I would offer one word: Perseverance. It won’t be easy, but it never is in life. Always do your best and enjoy the hard times because it is preparing you for the future that God has for you. Don’t give up even when you feel like the only way to determine the velocity of a rocket is to get strapped to it. You’ll for sure feel that way at some point, but that’s ok! It just means that you’re learning. Now about how the class could be different… I really don’t know. Ms. Skinner, you are absolutely phenomenal and words cannot express how much you mean to me and have done for me! I will say that it would have been nice had you been there for the whole chapter on waves and sound. The vodcast just isn’t the same… Keep on pushing students beyond the “breaking point” because on the other side I know how much better of a student and disciple I am because of it! Thank you so much for all that you have done and all that do for me!! I love you so much and now I am prepared for what God has in store, and you are a part of that! In all that you do, you point back to Christ. You are an example of how we should all live by doing all that you do for the glory of God. I’m going to miss you so much! I love you Ms. Skinner!! Sorry I dragged on a bit- you know how easily I go down the bunny trails 🙂

  25. Well it’s finally the last physics web post, and I’m actually doing it. This has been a great year in my growth as a student and I want to thank you Mrs. Skinner for that chance. I also want to thank you guys in my class for putting up with me asking so many questions (even if you guys don’t read this I’ll leave it in here anyways). I found that I can do anything that is put in front of me, by trying just working my way it. For future physics students I do suggest at least one thing, make sure you do your web post every week. I made that mistake this year. And if the work starts getting hard, don’t give up you’ll be ok. I honestly don’t think you could have done any better job this year teaching me physics Mrs. Skinner. I’m going to miss those talks that I got lost in every time next year. Thank you for the great year!

  26. LAST WEBPOST: Physics has been a wild ride (supposed to be a Six Flags reference). For me, this was a very fun class to be in. It was tough and used a lot of brainpower, but I feel very accomplished after being in this class. Physics is a subject that had you thinking in an almost abstract way that applied to things that you know about or could see. I think my ability to think about things in multiple different ways has also improved because of this class. My ability to work with others I think has improved a bit because we had to almost constantly be switching lab partners. For future students, I have some very important advice. Do your best to work on lab reports early. It may be tempting to do it at the last minute, but it will be tough. Do your homework. Do the extra credit! Don’t for get your webpost!!! Do your best, it will be hard, but it will be worth it. I promise. I don’t really think any methods need to be changed. It all worked well for me. One thing that might help is doing more problems, or having the students do the problems all by themselves. Going over conceptual material in more detail may help, but I think it really just takes the students effort to improve that. Ms. Skinner, I loved being in your class so much. I will miss you a lot and thank you for being my teacher for two years. See you later! Love you

  27. Welp, it’s finally here. I’m writing my last webpost (haha obviously). In physics i learned how to not give up even if the problems seems unsolvable because it just needs a new perspective (or a new formula). Physics has also forced me to learn to manage my time and not just wait till the last minute which I learned the hard way. Also, in class I have been able to learn how great God through everything he made. One such example is how we are able to hear things. I truly loved every moment of physics especially when Ms Skinner talked about God and daily applications of his might. One of my favorite stories she told us was the one about the umbrella and listening to the still small voice of God. To future students I urge you to not get complacent but drive to be your best in class. Have a passion for physics and don’t think of it as some random school work. Physics is actually kinda fun and is totally worth your attention. There is no other class that will compare to this one so please enjoy it. Finally I’m gonna talk about what should be changed in class. Without trying to kiss up or anything there is nothing I would change. Physics is by far my favorite class with the best teacher. You work your hardest to make us teach our full potential. I always hate it when i have to miss class and watch a podcast because they are not the same as a real live lesson. There is no other class that can compare to your teaching. I not only grew my passion for physics from you but I also grew in my passion for God. You have been a blessing to my life and I will always remember you and your class.

  28. I can’t believe this is actually my last web post! While this has been a bumpy ride, I learned so much this year. I had to learn to be persistent with problems I didn’t understand. I had to work with people I usually don’t work with. I had to study for tests differently since I had gotten used to just memorizing everything word for word with Mrs. Williams. The labs taught me how to break what seems like a huge mess down into manageable steps. Going into a lab like the egg bungee can be overwhelming, but I learned through this year to just calm down and take it a bit at a time. The only thing I might’ve changed is I wish we could’ve had a little more time for waves, but I know we were pushed for time that chapter. Thank you so much, Ms. Skinner. I love you!

  29. I can’t believe I survived physics this year! One of the biggest takeaways I got from physics was learning it’s okay to not always be perfect, and I learned a lot more from my failures (which there was plenty of). My biggest advice for future students would be to not procrastinate and also to not freak out if you don’t achieve a perfect score. Just do your best and that’s all that matters. The only thing I would change is that one Bernoulli chapter; it was difficult for the IBS class to come back after missing all the lessons and take a test, so maybe use that week as a lab week (because catching up on labs would be a lot easier than a test). Even though physics may not be my favorite subject, I still enjoyed this year and will miss you Ms. Skinner!

  30. Wow. My last web post. I think I made it all year without forgetting one!! I’m sure I’ll wake up in panic on graduation Saturday thinking I forgot to do one…
    I’m so happy you asked how physics has grown me, because I really think this class has grown me tremendously. I always say chemistry taught me how to “fail”, but physics really really taught me that failing is a part of science and is not inherently bad! Most of the time, I was only able to succeed once I accepted that I must first fail once.. or five times. I learned to even welcome failure in many instances. Growth is not purely linear- sometimes we must work backwards, or against what seems like the correct solution. I loved that there WERE wrong answers, but it wasn’t the end of the world if I was wrong. It just meant I had more opportunity to grow. And what a relief that was, to stop seeing failure as the enemy. Then, I really had nothing to lose and only had opportunity to gain!
    I also learned the importance of working hard even when I don’t love the topic, and ESPECIALLY when I don’t understand it. I’ve always been one of those people that quits things when they aren’t immediately perfect at it, and high school in general has helped me let go of that, but physics really solidified that idea. I would not, by any means, say that I am great at physics. There were SO many times where I just did not understand what was happening, and earlier in my life, that would have intimidated me, and I would have just shut down and ignored it. And it didn’t help that I find life science and chemistry (thus, my biochemistry major) much more naturally interesting than physics. BUT something was different for me this year. God wanted to work through my struggles and show me that he calls Christians to be set apart in their work through striving for excellence for His glory, and relying on Him to fill in the blanks. So, I learned to push through the struggles (especially conceptual physics, def not my strength!) and instead of getting frustrated with what I cannot do, I FINALLY recognized that it wasn’t my WEAKNESS/failure, but an opportunity to grow in my understanding of the world God created for me! I gained some AMAZING study habits that I know God will use later in my research career, and I am so thankful for you for giving me a safe environment to struggle, learn, and persevere without fear.
    Future physics students- this class is HARD. If you’re looking to fly through senior year, this is not going to be aligned with that goal. And honestly, sometimes that frustrated me when I needed to do homework while some of my friends watched Netflix. But looking back on this year, I know God wanted me to stay in this class! My advice is to just see it through. When you get frustrated, take a break, come back, and try something different. Like Ms. Skinner says, “what’s the definition of insanity?” If a study method isn’t working, change it. If the problem isn’t getting solved, choose a different way to work it out. AND ALSO really pay attention to the connections between physics and God! Ms. Skinner points out a lot of it (like resonance and “tune thy heart”… WOW!), but start looking for it on your own. It changes your perspective, makes physics SO MUCH MORE USEFUL (because you likely won’t be calculating free-fall on an everyday basis), and really, that’s what this is all about. I fell in love with science SO MUCH MORE as I saw how Christianity and science are God’s truth and, therefore, synonymous.
    And finally, to conclude my novel of a webpost: As I mentioned earlier, my greatest struggle was conceptual physics. It was almost like I took it for granted, because we interact with physics so casually in our daily lives, and make so many incorrect assumptions. So, if anything, I would say if we could do more lecture (boring, I KNOW) before labs so I had a better base understanding of concepts before, maybe I wouldn’t have had to work so hard to understand the lab and the concept. But, on the other side of that, I found that reading the book and taking notes before lecture SIGNIFICANTLY improved my understanding of the concepts in both lecture and lab. Videos/demonstrations that applied it to things I see everyday also really helped.
    I really hope this web post doesn’t delete when I try to post it. Its so long that I could publish this as a series of novels.
    I love you Ms. Skinner! The science department has poured into me every single year I’ve been at NCS. It has made all the difference in my life as a Christian, student, and future scientist.

      • AND ONE MORE THING: this class taught me how to handle assignments with no directions/little information. I feel like we don’t get a lot of that at our school, and at first I really hated those types of assignments, but I also knew I needed to get comfortable with them because in research, you really are just on your own with your own ideas. Again, I am so thankful to gain experience with that in a setting where I know I am supported!

      • Wow I can’t believe this is my last web post EVER! It has gone by so fast. Physics has taught me many things but one of the most important was patience. I had to learn that everything was not going to work out the first time and that is ok! For future students I would tell them that it’s ok if you don’t get it at first, you are going to be doing a lot of that. It’s ok to fail and fail and fail. And it’s ok to work backwards. I had to learn that actually doing all these things are ok. You aren’t dumb, or stupid everybody makes mistakes. The only thing I probably change would be to do more hands on stuff because that’s where I actually learn the most. Thank you Mrs. Skinner for everything you’ve done for us. You have continually poured into me and it has changed my life! I can’t thank you enough and I truly have had the best teachers that I could have ever gotten. I’m going to miss you!

  31. This class grew me to Be a legitimately better person. I grew intellectually and emotionally by learning patience and also how to take control of my own academic career. I know it sounds odd, but I used to passively go after my grades and what I cared for in school. This class taught me that if you WANT to make a change, you will have to initiate it. That was the most important thing I learned because it led to my internship this summer. The advice for future physics students is to whole heartedly fall in love with this course; it seems awful only if you let it be that way. I feel that the only way to truly appreciate Physics is for future students to humble themselves before they even walk through the classroom doors. The only thing that could have helped me was the application of more labs: o know it’s crazy, but I wanted more labs for a higher workload, that way I would feel like a stronger student st the end of the year. THANK YOU MS. SKINNER. I LOVE YOU AND YOU TAUGHT ME HOW TO LOVE LEARNING THROUGH ADVERSITY. THANK YOU AND GOOD NIGHT.

  32. I can’t believe this is actually my last webpost!!
    While this class has probably been the most challenging out of all my high school classes, it did teach me a lot. This class taught me that I am going to have to actually put in a lot of work to get the grades I want, and sometimes even when I do put in the work, I still won’t get an A. I learned to be okay with that. I still worked my hardest and tried my best not to get discouraged, but I learned that my entire life doesn’t revolve around my grades. This class taught me to be grateful for the talents God has given me. Throughout the year I was just constantly amazed at all the beautiful things in the world that we just don’t see and also how beautiful it is that our brain can understand those things.
    To future Physics students I want to tell you that you have to be motivated for this class!!! This class requires several hours of work and studying if you want to succeed. But it pays off!! Even though I didn’t make the best of grades, I still learned so much.
    I think the only thing that could have helped me more this year was just going a bit slower when learning the lessons for the first time. I understand that this is an honors class and therefore it is supposed to move quickly, but sometimes we moved from concept to concept so quickly I just couldn’t keep up. But overall you really did do an absolutely phenomenal job at teaching this difficult material! You have been such a wonderful teacher Ms. Skinner and I am so glad I got to have you for two years. I will miss you dearly and thank you for all the things you taught me, not just Physics and Chemistry, but about life and how to love the Lord in all you do.

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