Author Archives: Mr. Bigler

About Mr. Bigler

Physics teacher at Lynn English High School in Lynn, MA. Proud father of two daughters. Violist & morris dancer.

Raison d’Être

One of my now former students graduated on Friday.  Just before graduation, she handed one of the nicest letters I’ve ever received.  I am reproducing parts of her letter here, with some identifying information removed. +10   

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The First AP Physics 1 Exam

This is a self-centered post, for which I ask my readers’ indulgence. This has been my first year teaching AP Physics, and the first year of the new AP Physics 1 exam.  (For those not familiar with the change, effective last … Continue reading

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Avoiding Failure by Never Trying

Each year, as students sink farther and farther into the abyss of test-driven curriculum and low-level thinking, I have to work harder and harder to teach them high-level thinking skills.  This year, my students and I seem to be approaching … Continue reading

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The Aftermath of Standardized Test Prep

When potential students ask whether (high school) physics is hard, I tell them, “Imagine a year of algebra word problems, in which you have to understand a situation in order to figure out which equation to apply and how to … Continue reading

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Making A Student Cry

I made one of my students cry this afternoon. +130   

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Your Wish is My Command

Every year, on the first day of school, I subject my classes to a ruse in which I eat a “candle”. I get out a candle holder and put a candle inside it. I lead a class discussion in which … Continue reading

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Saving Grandpa’s Life: The Value of Science Education

My father, the wonderful and caring person whom my students can blame for much of my sense of humor, is in the hospital. (He’s doing well and should be released in a few days.) While my fourteen-year-old daughter Margaret didn’t … Continue reading

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Senior Prank 2014

This morning, Lynn English’s Class of 2014 pulled their senior prank, which was a brief, raucous party in the third-floor corridor of the school. Students had various types of party noisemakers. They filled the hallways with confetti as they sang, … Continue reading

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How a Fuse Works

My physics classes are studying electricity.  One of the demos I do for electricity is to show how a fuse works by exploding a strand of wire. +18-4   

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Childhood Regained

Three years ago, I taught a one-year stint in a “no excuses” charter school.  (It was the least satisfying year of my teaching career.)  The biology teacher and I started a science team. Problem solving and building things with power … Continue reading

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