Pendulum Swings: Models and Metaphors

In this lecture, Arthur Eisenkraft, Science Educator, UMass Boston, will explain how the exploration of pendula provides new ways to understand our personal and professional challenges.

PLS Bhopal SM Post

For thousands of years, children have delighted in the back-and-forth motion of a playground swing. Galileo saw the child’s swing and a chandelier’s swaying with fresh eyes and made discoveries of a pendulum’s properties. 

The surprisingly straightforward observations and analyses lead us to new discoveries about the world around us. Exploration of pendula also provides new ways in which we can understand our personal and professional challenges.

About the Speaker

Distinguished Professor of Science Education, Professor of Physics and Director of the Centre of Science and Math in Context (COSMIC) at the University of Massachusetts Boston (UMass Boston), Eisenkraft is the past president of the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) and past chair of the Science Academic Advisory Committee of the College Board.

He leads Active Physics and Active Chemistry, introducing high quality project-based science to students. He also chairs (and co-created) the Toshiba/​NSTA ExploraVision Awards, involving 15,000 students annually for over 30 years. He leads the Wipro Science Education Fellowship programme which is bringing district transformation through teacher leadership across the US.

His current research projects include investigating the efficacy of a second-generation model of distance learning for professional development and a study of professional development choices that teachers make when facing a large-scale curriculum change.

Eisenkraft has received numerous awards recognising his teaching and related work including the National Science Board (NSB) Public Service Award, American Association of Physics Teachers’ (AAPT) Robert A Millikan Medal, and NSTA’s Robert H Carleton Award. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and holds a patent for a laser vision testing system.