This category contains 29 posts

How does a rechargeable battery recharge?

I was talking about batteries in my physics class and it got me thinking, how do rechargeable batteries work? A battery (like the ones that died in my mouse this morning) uses chemical reactions to create a charge. Basically, (in really simple terms) the electrons get pushed up the equivalent of a really big hill … Continue reading

What is LIGO?

A few weeks ago, talk of gravitational waves dominated most of science reporting. Gravitational waves are similar to the ripples that move out along the surface of the water after you drop a pebble into a pond, except that instead of being ripples in water they are ripples in space-time. Einstein predicted gravitational waves as … Continue reading

A refracted hippo

Sometimes I am surprised when science hits me over the head during an everyday activity. I was at the Calgary Zoo a few weeks ago. One would expect that some biology may creep around the corner at you, but I didn’t really expect to see such an amazing example of refraction.   You can see … Continue reading

The physics of FOOSH

So at the moment I am teaching about momentum and impulse in my physics class. I really like these topics because they have so many real life applications that are easy for students to see. I’ve talked about car crashes, air bags, and crumple zones. I love bringing in a variety of different sports from … Continue reading

Why I’m glad I speak science

I remember being in junior high when my skating coach asked me why it was important to pull your arms and legs in when doing a spin. I responded by talking about surface area and resistance. It was a little more technical detail than she was expecting. If I had a choice for my science … Continue reading

Dry your hands with one paper towel

For years now I have stubbornly refused to use two paper towels to dry my hands. The prevalence of the two towel hand dry had to be having a negative impact on our paper consumption and waste production. But until now this meant that my pants generally assisted in my hand drying efforts. Little did … Continue reading

The physics of my clarinet

It’s funny how you can use something so frequently and never consider how it works. I have played clarinet, off and on, for many years and I have not once thought about how my instrument actually works. But suddenly I was struck with wanting to know. I admit I was somewhat surprised when I typed … Continue reading

What makes hummingbirds special?

I spent some time out at the Haselwood Inn Bed & Breakfast┬áthis weekend, where with a little help from a hummingbird feeder, some pretty nice flowers, and thirteen acres of natural landscape, the ruby-throated hummingbirds are prevalent. Apparently last weekend there was a migration through the property. What is it about these tiny birds that … Continue reading

What goes into a dragon boat line up?

This weekend was the Edmonton Dragon Boat Festival. I paddle and co-coach Dragon Blades, which used to be made up of skaters and family members from the Edmonton Speed Skating Club, but in all honesty is now more friends than skaters. We had an amazing festival, finishing 5th overall. There were a lot of things … Continue reading

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