Wonders of Physics: Battling the War on Science Illiteracy

Studies have shown time and time again a general lack of interest in science and an overall decline in science literacy in the United States.

Since 1984, the University of Wisconsin – Madison has been active in combating this problem of science illiteracy with their annual Wonders of Physics program. WOP logo

Wonders of Physics covers motion, heat, sound, electricity, magnetism, and light in a fast paced, entertaining  show  suitable for people of all ages and backgrounds.

The show has been presented by Professor Clint Sprott, Emeritus Professor of Physics, University of Wisconsin, on the Madison campus over 200 times to a total audience of about 70,000.

Physics can be fun…

The Wonders of Physics presentations are held each February in Madison, Wisconsin.  DIRECTIONS

Free tickets are be available after the first of the year.

Better hurry — shows fill up fast and tickets are gone right away!


Nurture your inner Einstein!

Scroll down for a ton of resource links, experiments to try, and videos with Prof. Sprott!!

PROF. SPROTT CURRENTLY HAS 30 SHOWS AVAILABLE FOR VIEWING ON YOUTUBE HERE.

 

To check on availability and order your free WOP tickets, click here.


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The theme of the program changes from year to year – so even if you’ve been there before, you’ll still find something amazing!

The Wonders of Physics program inspires interest in physics among people of all ages and backgrounds.

Shows fill up fast, order your free tickets now!

If you have attended the show, you can give them feedback so that they can continually improve the shows.

UW-Madison Physics department is also hosting their annual Physics Fair on February 20th from 11 am to 4 pm. It’s free! No ticket required!

More resources courtesy of the Wonders of Physics program are listed below.  Check them out!


Videos are available for purchase or free online streaming here.

Wonders of Physics, Prof. Sprott, UW-Madison - video streaming

You can stream the videos directly to your computer for free by clicking on the links on http://sprott.physics.wisc.edu/wop.htm

Here’s Professor Sprott in action at the 2011 Cairo Science Festival as he talks about sound waves and explains how electricity works by using a Tesla coil to generate very high voltage to create electromagnetic waves in the air.


Resource Links

Just For Kids — Here are some Experiments you can try at home.

Motion Build your own Roller CoasterSpin like an Ice SkaterReaction TimeRandom Walk
Heat Home MeteorologyVortex in a BottleSmoke RingsCollapse a Can
Sound The Doppler EffectBuild a String Telephone
Light Make a Pinhole CameraScience of BubblesMeasure the Speed of Light
Electricity Plasma Ball ExperimentsStatic Electricity
Magnetism Build an ElectromagnetFusion Cookies

Experiments You Can Do At Home from Professor Clint Sprott and the Wonders of Physics
Download a PDF with many different experiments that you can do at home exploring motion, heat, sound, electricity, magnetism and light. You may have heard of Newton’s Cradle, but have you ever heard of Newton’s Beads?
Check out this video of Mike uncovering the science behind this demo.  

More Science Links and Physics Resources from the Wonders of Physics Program:

Home Experiments (pdf)
Download printable version 
UW Space Place: Education and public outreach center of the UW-Madison Astronomy Department
Science is Fun: Educational website for Chemistry from the mind of UW-Madison Chemistry professor Bassam Z. Shakhashiri
Geology Museum: Explore the Geology Museum and take a peek into Wisconsin’s deep history
Institute for Biology Education: Raising the next generation of Biology Scientists
Science Alliance: UW-Madison Science Outreach on Campus
Synchrotron Radiation Center: UW-Madison SRC aiding researchers in their discoveries
Science Friday (SciFri): Weekly science radio show hosted by NPR, Fridays 1-3pm
Wonders of Physics Demonstrations – more information on the physics behind the show
Teacher’s Guide (pdf)- printable information on the physics behind the show
Physics Demonstrations book by Clint Sprott
Database of Physics Demonstrations – from the UW Physics Department
Books of Science Experiments from the University of Maryland Physics Departmenpwtqodfq_400x400t
How Stuff Works
Science Links for other UW Science Outreach Programs

Videos are available for free online streaming here. 

For more information, performance schedule, and tickets visit: Wonders of Physics Home Page

You can also access more information on their Facebook page or subsc
ribe to their 
YouTube page. 

The Wonders of Physics program is made possible by grants from the Office of Fusion Energy Sciences of the United States Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation.

 

 

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2 responses to “Wonders of Physics: Battling the War on Science Illiteracy

  1. On February 20, the UW-Madison Physics department is also hosting their annual Physics Fair from 11 a. m. to 4 p. m. Tours, demonstrations, hands-on activities… The Ingersoll Physics Museum is also open at the same time. http://wonders.physics.wisc.edu/physics-fair.htm

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the information about the Physics Fair. It’s been added it to the calendar.

    Like

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