E l e c t r o m a g n e t i s m

At Portland Waldorf High School - Taught by Mr. Miller - 2008


Book (as images):
Book (as PDF):
Benjamin Franklin's original writings detailng his electical experiments
Handout 1:
Handout 2:
Handout 3:
Handout 4:
Handout 5:
Handout 6:
Handout 7:
Handout 8: (Link)
Handout 9: (Link)
Handout 10:
Handout 11:
Handout 12:
Handout 13:
Handout 14:
Handout 15:
Handout 16:
Handout 17:
Handout 18:
Handout 19:
Handout 20:
Handout 21:
Handout 22:
Handout 23:
Handout 24:






The Physics Classroom – A great site and the first place to go. You want either the section on Static Electricity or Dynamic Electricity.


Electromagnetism – a good general site covering magnets, straight wires, electromagnetic coils (solenoids), motors, generators, induction, transformers, and a few other things.  Quick and easy.


Virtual Labs and Simulations – just what it says, covers many topics (although there are some outdated links).  Nice for visualization!


Hyper Physics – Intermediate to advanced but still short explanations of many topics – good for definitions of things, reminders of formulas and basic principles.


PBS show on Edison – Difference between AC and DC, what happens in a wire, a batter, a light bulb, and an AC generator.


William J. Beaty, Electrical Engineer – In-depth, advanced (but readable and understandable!) and extremely interesting articles on electricity – if you really want to get into the fascinating details.  High quality – also a great source for construction project help! (Check out his homepage too.)

Electricity Misconceptions (William J. Beaty) A VERY useful and informative site for clearing up misconceptions about electricity, a part of Beaty's site, but worth mentioning separately.
Visualiztion of the Electric and Magnetic Fields: Applets found under "Electricity and Magnetism: Statics" and "Electrodynamics", specifically the 2-D and 3-D Electrostatic Field Applets.
Electricity and Magnetism at MIT a great source with many amazing images and videos that help you understand electric and magnetic fields. Specifically look at "Electrostatics", "Magnetostatics", and "Faraday's Law" sections.
The Electronics Club - Go here to learn about Circuit Symbols, Soldering, and much more. Many projects here as well as lots of helpful background theory - a great resource for anyone doing an electronics-type project.



Lab 1:
Lab 1:
Lab 1:
Invisible Tension Lab Instructions for PART 3 only - for writeup.
Lab 2:
Magnets Lab Instructions
The Kanzius Machine - potentially destroying cancer cells with radio waves



Notes/Due Date:
Apr. 25

1. Your quiz #4 grades are posted here. You will need a username and password to access these, which will be posted at right after Monday. Please view only your own quiz.

2. Read my notes on quiz #4.

3. Work on your project.

4. Check out this video on research using electromagnetism to help cure cancer - fascinating! (From 60 Minutes)

Apr. 24

1. Study for tomorrow's quiz on magnetism, specifically going over your notes from class, your magnets lab, and the handouts #17, #18, #19 and #20. (Mostly handout #17 and the magnets lab)

2. Read handout #23: Transformers

3. Review the printed handouts on motors.

Quiz Tomorrow on magnets.
Apr. 23

NOTE: I added, per request, the instructions for the magnets lab.

1. Read handouts #22: Faraday, and the handouts given today in class on motors (NOT on this website)

2. Review #20: Oersted and #21: Comparison of Electric and Magnetic forces

3. Magnets lab should be finished.

4. Work on your construction project.

Quiz on magnets on Friday (start studying now)
Apr. 22

1. Finish Magnets Lab write-up

2. Read Handout #20: Oersted, and handout #21 Comparison of Electric and Magnetic forces

3. Make sure you have read yesterday's assignments.

4. Work on your projects.

Apr. 21

1. Study for the re-take quiz tomorrow (go over quiz #3, also: Galvani and the definitions of voltage, current, and resistance)

2. Review handout #17: Properties of Magnets

3. Read handout #18: The Magnetic Earth and #19: Pole Wandering and Pole Reversal

4. Write-up for Magnets lab (well into discussion/analysis).

5. You should be well into the actual construction of your project.

Quiz Tomorrow (#3 re-take)
Apr. 18

1. Read handouts #15: Magnets and William Gilbert, #16: Robert Norman and Magnetic Dip, and #17: Properties of Magnets

2. Read in the Cartoon Guide to Physics chapters 17 and 18 (pages 149-163, or slides 45 - 59)

3. Complete Ohm's Law Worksheet - to be turned in on Monday (late).

4. Work on your project.

5. Start your magnets lab write-up: introduction, materials, procedure, and observations.

Apr. 17

1. Review for quiz tomorrow: Ohm's Law worksheet, series and parallel circuits and the equations for voltage, current, and resistance in each, the picture of the electric field (around a positive charge, a negative charge, and between a positive and negative or between a positive and positive charge), Galvani's work with frog legs and Voltas work with batteries.

2. Make sure you have read yesterday's reading assignment from the Cartoon Guide to Physics.

3. Work on your construction project.

4. A comic about the Large Hadron Collider

Quiz Tomorrow!
Apr. 16

1. Finish Ohm's Law Worksheet.

2. Read chapters 12 - 16 in the Cartoon Guide to Physics. This is page 105 through page 148 in the PDF version and from slide #1 to #44 on the image version.

Quiz on Friday!
Apr. 15

1. Get as far as you can with the worksheet on Ohm's Law.

2. Read a bit about Mr. Ohm himself.

3. Make sure you understand the basic ideas presented in the Galvani and Volta handouts.

4. Look at a video of a 35,000 volt 'spark'.

Apr. 14

1. Read handouts: #10: Luigi Galvani, #11: Volta, and #12: Basic Circuits and Ohm's Law

2. You should be hard at work on your projects, having already found plans and ordered or bought or found materials. If you are doing a project that has an electrical diagram, look here for help on the symbols.

Apr. 11

(This looks like a lot but really it is all review, plus a few short videos and your construction project)

1. Study Handout #5, Thinking Through Charge for Monday's quiz. The quiz will be over the concepts presented in the handout and their applications as we discussed today in class.

2. Watch the following videos: Electric Fence, At the Gas Station, and What did this girl do that was unsafe?

3. Review the handouts on Coulomb and Franklin

4. Start gathering designs and materials for your construction project.

5. Think about the 'electric straw' experiment we did today; why did Sam get a shock on his lips when he picked up the glass to drink, but not when he put his lips to it when it was just sitting on the table?

Quiz on Monday over handout #5, Thinking Through Charge

The quiz will ask you to depict in a drawing our ideas about how the + and - charges might be moving when, for example, a negatively charged rod is brought near a neutral pith ball.

Study specifically from the handout::
The concept of NEUTRAL, the concept of the GROUND, What observations lead us to think that there are two types of charge, CHARGED STATE SEPARATION (i.e. induction), CONDUCTORS and INSULATORS.

Apr. 10

1. Read Handouts 5, 6, and 7:
Thinking Through Charge, Coulomb, and Franklin

2. Start researching construction plans for your construction project. You will need to buy your materials very soon so you can get started on building.

3. By this point you should be done writing up Lab #1 Part 3.

Apr. 9

1. Decide on your construction project and your partner (if any). Tomorrow you must clear your choice with me.

2. Read a little bit about electrical history in handout 3.

3. Study for the quiz tomorrow.

4. Finish Lab 1 part #3 write-up based on today's in-class collation of observations, analysis, and conclusions.

Quiz tomorrow.

I suggest looking through the Cartoon Guide to Physics (the first 18 pages (numbered 105-122). These will be assigned tomorrow anyway, but will help your studying.

Apr. 8

1. Start your write-up for Lab 1, part 3. Try to get through the introduction, materials, procedure, and observations section. Discussion/analysis and the conclusions section will be based on tomorrow's in-class discussion.

2. Read Handout 2, Charles DuFay

3. Search for a project idea. Tomorrow is the last day you have to research which project you want to do!

See the Syllabus and the Lab 1 Sample Writeup for instructions on how to write your lab.

We will have a quiz on Thursday.

Apr. 7

1. Examine this website, check out the links and resources

2. Look at the Project Ideas and search the web for project ideas. You have to choose your project and start on it by this Thursday.

3. Read about the word Charge

4. Read the Syllabus

Most recent homework will always be listed on the top of this table.


Email Mr. Miller: spiritself AT gmail DOT com