Embracing Winter’s Gift: Outdoor Exploration of Free Fall with MYP 4 Students

I am excited to share an exhilarating and spontaneous learning experience that unfolded on a snowy day with our MYP 4 students at the English International School of Bratislava. Leveraging the snowy landscape, we transformed the winter wonderland into an impromptu laboratory for an engaging exploration of free fall within the framework of the IB.

As the snowflakes danced in the air, presenting a serene yet exciting atmosphere, we saw an opportunity to bridge theoretical concepts with practical application. With the snow-covered ground as our canvas, we embarked on an outdoor experiment centered around the principles of free fall.

Armed with measuring tools and a sense of curiosity, our students began their investigation by measuring different heights within the school premises. Utilizing these varying heights, the students experimented by dropping snowballs to observe their descent and record the time taken for free fall.

The measurements of time taken for the snowballs to fall from different heights were meticulously recorded. Armed with this data, our students applied their knowledge of physics to calculate the final velocity attained by the snowballs at the end of their free fall. The exercise involved analyzing the relationship between time, distance, and velocity in a practical context.

The beauty of this spontaneous laboratory was the blend of learning and enjoyment. Engaging with the snow, crafting snowballs, and witnessing their descent became an interactive and memorable way for students to grasp fundamental concepts of physics.

This impromptu exploration aligned seamlessly with the International Baccalaureate framework, emphasizing the importance of experiential learning and the application of theoretical knowledge in real-world scenarios. It encouraged critical thinking, data analysis, and problem-solving skills among our students.

At our school, we cherish moments like these—where a snowy day becomes a canvas for learning, and curiosity fuels experimentation. Embracing these spontaneous opportunities allows us to instill a sense of wonder and discovery in our students, nurturing their passion for science and inquiry.

This experience also highlighted the importance of adaptability and resilience in learning. Embracing unexpected opportunities and turning them into valuable learning experiences is a skill that we aim to cultivate in our students.

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