We're just beginning our unit on Motion and Forces here in sixth grade and the timing couldn't have been better for me to come across Exploratorium's Science of Baseball website.
The site features several activities and lessons about forces and motion, as well as the history and culture of baseball. Obviously, there are many ways to use the site in our science classes, particularly during the physics units.
More interesting, however, was the activity on reaction speeds and how it could be used in our Metacognition courses. In our school's metacognition class, students learn about the brain and its various learning styles. Once students have a better understanding of their own brain, they also learn and adapt several study and time management strategies based on how their brain works best.
Every year, the students participate in a series of silly and fun activities that show their strengths and challenges based on their own senses and perceptions. One of these tests is about reaction speed. I do not teach this course, so I have never studied the ins-and-outs of what reaction speed tells about a persons physical aptitude and processing speed, but I look forward to seeing how the Metacognition teachers can incorporate this activity into their lessons. I have seen many ways in the past few years to assess response time, but maybe this one will engage them and their Phillies fever!