Curriculum Materials

Amusement Park Physics is a lively program that has swept the nation over the last four decades. It is designed to use rides and games found in amusement parks as a laboratory for your science students. It can provide a valuable educational experience; at the same time it is a lot of fun and can provide incentive for your students to become developed for you to use in your classroom during the school year in conjunction with Physics Day activities.

You are encouraged to use the activities at Lagoon as the basis of classroom discussions and lessons of various aspects of physics. The contests provide an excellent motivation for lessons in rotational mechanics and centripetal force, in conservation of energy, in design of measurement devices, and in data collection and error analysis, just to name a few examples.

Utah State University provides the following resources:

  • A free 175 page Amusement Park Physics Curriculum Manual, which includes:
    • Exercises to do at Physics Day,
    • More detailed workbook activities to follow up on lessons learned at Physics Day,
    • Additional resources.
  • A High School and Middle School Student Workbooks.
  • Detailed plans for construction of a Contest Buzzer Set.
  • Links to related websites.
  • An annotated bibliography of additional reference materials.
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