About This Chapter
Who's it for?
This unit of our AP Physics 1 Homeschool course will benefit any student who is trying to learn about wave properties and behaviors. There is no faster or easier way to learn about mechanical waves. Among those who would benefit are:
- Students who require an efficient, self-paced course of study to learn about wave parameters, wave types, sound wave frequency and speed, wave resonance and wave interference.
- Homeschool parents looking to spend less time preparing lessons and more time teaching.
- Homeschool parents who need a physics curriculum that appeals to multiple learning types (visual or auditory).
- Gifted students and students with learning differences.
How it works:
- Students watch a short, fun video lesson that covers a specific unit topic.
- Students and parents can refer to the video transcripts to reinforce learning.
- Short quizzes and a mechanical waves unit exam confirm understanding or identify any topics that require review.
Mechanical Waves Unit Objectives
- Identify the origins and basic properties of waves.
- Describe wavelength, amplitude, period, frequency and speed.
- Differentiate between transverse and longitudinal waves.
- Recognize factors affecting sound wave parameters.
- Explain the relationship between wave resonance and transmission.
- Provide examples of constructive and destructive interference.
- Explain the Doppler effect.
1. Vibrations and Waves: Energy and Motion
What is a wave? What causes waves, and how do they travel from one place to another? This lesson will guide you through the basics of waves. We'll discuss their origins from vibrations and investigate how they carry energy through a medium.
2. Wave Parameters: Wavelength, Amplitude, Period, Frequency & Speed
How do we measure and describe waves? How do waves differ based upon their shapes? This lesson will guide you through the five wave parameters - period, frequency, amplitude, wavelength, and speed - that we use to characterize waves.
3. Transverse & Longitudinal Waves: Definition & Examples
What comes to mind when you think of a wave? Chances are your mental image takes the form of a transverse wave. But, longitudinal waves are just as important, and understanding the difference is vital to learning about waves. In this lesson, explore both types of waves and the unique characteristics of each.
4. What is Sound? - Definition and Factors Affecting the Speed of Sound
Explore the minute workings of sound waves and how they travel. We'll discuss the main factors that affect the speed of sound waves, and we'll try some mathematical problems involving the wave equation.
5. Pitch and Volume in Sound Waves
What do pitch and volume mean when talking about sound waves? Further your understanding of sound waves in this lesson as we explore the more familiar aspects of sound. We'll learn about pitch and volume and how they relate to sound wave parameters.
6. Resonance: Definition & Transmission of Waves
This lesson describes how sound and light waves are affected by the principle of resonance. Learn how resonance occurs through the vibrations and resonant frequencies of objects. You'll investigate everyday examples of resonance and learn how to break a wine glass with your voice!
7. Constructive and Destructive Interference
What happens when one wave meets another? Do the waves converge to make one giant wave? Or, do they destroy each other? In this lesson, we'll explore the workings of wave interference.
8. The Doppler Effect: Definition, Examples & Applications
What is the Doppler effect? How does it affect our perceptions of sound and light? In this lesson, learn how traveling wave sources can change the way we observe sound and light waves. Explore the applications of the Doppler effect on shock waves, sonic booms, and the movements of distant galaxies.
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Other chapters within the AP Physics 1: Homeschool Curriculum course
- AP Physics 1 Vectors: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Kinematics: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Newton's Laws: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Work, Energy, & Power: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Linear Momentum: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Motion: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Oscillations: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Rotational Motion: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Electrical Forces and Fields: Homeschool Curriculum
- AP Physics 1 Direct Current Circuits: Homeschool Curriculum