ERIC Number: EJ1177843
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-May
Abstractor: As Provided
Using Superheroes Such as Hawkeye, Wonder Woman and the Invisible Woman in the Physics Classroom
Fitzgerald, Barry W.
Physics Education, v53 n3 Article 035032 May 2018
Communication of difficult concepts in the physics classroom can be negatively affected by the absence of a strong link between physics content and the experiences or interests of students. One possible method towards addressing this issue is to motivate physics content with reference to popular culture figures such as superheroes. We find ourselves in an age where superhero films are immensely popular with numerous superhero films scheduled for release over the coming years. With many students familiar with many of these characters and their superpowers, superheroes can facilitate a unique platform to aid in the dissemination of physics materials in the classroom. In this paper, we present three examples where superheroes can be used to motivate learning objectives in physics and, if desired, promote critical thinking on behalf of the student. We also reflect on how using the superhero genre in the classroom can be used to address underrepresentation of women, stereotyping, and diversity issues in physics.
Descriptors: Physics, Science Instruction, Scientific Concepts, Teaching Methods, Popular Culture, Cartoons, Films, Student Motivation, Critical Thinking, Stereotypes, Social Attitudes, Motion, Disproportionate Representation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
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