When students think of physics tuition, they often think of classes that drill them on the physics O level or A level topics. However, one thing that some tuition classes may overlook is that practical aspect of physics.
Yes, we’re talking about those physics lab lessons where you spend measuring things, making pendulums, circuits, and the like! Usually, schools don’t dedicate a lot of time to practical classes, and only really amp up the frequency when it’s nearing the practical examinations.
However, physics is not just a theoretical subject. Students need to know how to use the theories in experiments, and relate it to processes in the real world. Think you can gloss over the practical exams? Think again! Here are some reasons why physics practical is important for learners:
Learning physics is extremely difficult if you only learn the theories. Instead, physics comes alive when you can relate it to real-life phenomena. By recalling examples of how a toy car moves in relation to forces acting on it, students can better internalise Newton’s laws of motion.
When a student has seen for themselves how a pendulum swings, they can more easily remember the theories they’ve learnt about momentum. This is why practical demonstrations and hands-on learning is crucial to students – not just for the practical exams, but to aid their learning.
Sitting at a table all day long can be fatiguing and mundane, especially for learners who prefer kinaesthetic methods of learning. Practical experiments give students a chance to get involved in science itself, get their hands dirty, and think more like an actual scientist.
Some of these experiments also show off some fascinating phenomena that can get students amazed and intrigued by science again. Thus, practical lessons are often something that students look forward to, and it plays an important role in sustaining students’ interests in physics.
Practical exams are a thing because these scientific skills are crucial. It may seem quite basic at the O level standard, but these are fundamental skills that students will need when they go up to A levels, potentially join a research programme, or when they study a science at the university level.
Thus, students and teachers should take practical exams seriously as a chance to build up these practical skills. Students should use this platform to get comfortable and confident with using scientific apparatus, be familiar with formulating an investigative experiment, and be aware of how to record data.
Physics practical shouldn’t just be an exam to prepare for. There is so much more potential and benefits of using practical sessions and demonstrations to enhance learning! If you have been neglecting physics practical in favour of theoretical learning, now’s the time to embrace practical again.
A good physics tuition class should incorporate a healthy amount of practical or at least demonstrations in their sessions. At home, you can also perform simple experiments to complement your study sessions. With a more balanced approach to learning physics, we can promise it will be more fun and effective!