Time required: ~50 minutes
This lesson plan assumes that the audience has some familiarity of forces and equilibrium concepts in physics 12. However this lesson plan can easily be adapted to introduce and teach forces and equilibrium concepts.
1) Introduction of myself
2) Review of Newton’s Laws
3) Review of Equilibrium
4) Review of Torque
5) Review of Forces and the breakdown of a force component into its horizontal and vertical components
6) Introduce the beam bridge, and do a some torque and equilibrium calculations
7) Present a styrofoam beam bridge and load weights until the bridge fails
8) Talk about why the bridge failed
9) Talk about compression and tension forces and how they affect the bridge
10) Introduce the arch bridge, present a styrofoam version of it and destroy it
11) Introduce the truss bridge.
12) Go over some calculations of torque and equilibrium in a truss
13) Present and destroy a styrofoam model of a truss bridge
14) Introduce the suspension bridge as well as different forms of the suspension bridge
15) Present and destroy a styrofoam model of a cable stayed bridge
Click here for a PowerPoint presentation.