Physics Department, University of Calabria (ITALY)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Pages: 3645-3648
ISBN: 978-84-612-7578-6
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 3rd International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 9-11 March, 2009
Location: Valencia, Spain
Observations carried on magnetic interactions are a very fascinating tool to introduce the fundamental physical concept of field. The use of iron filings to display the magnetic field is well known; quantitative measurements on magnetic interactions are instead less common, mainly at high school level. Furthermore, many multimedia tools are available, illustrating the line-of-force pattern of magnetic field, although often referring to “ideal” magnets’ systems.
In this connection a high educational potential is associated with the integrated use of quantitative measurements and visualization in a complementary manner.
In this work we present a Java-based multimedia tool allowing to virtually explore a real experiment built with easily found materials: steel wool shavings, strong little magnets and ferromagnetic spheres obtained from the well-known Geomag™ toy, a precision electronic scale, and a little more available in a hardware store. The interactive multimedia, proposed as a tool to support the real experiment, allows learners to immediately (and visually) relate the previously measured strength of interactions between magnets with the displayed pattern of field-line, when some experimental parameter (e.g. the intermagnet distance) is modified.
physics education, multimedia, virtual laboratory, magnetic field, educational toys.