Newton's Second Law
Forces and Motion

Things you'll need to decide on as you plan: Non-Zero Force Changes Speed

Teaching Guidance for 11-14 Supporting Physics Teaching

Bringing together two sets of constraints

Focusing on the learners:

Distinguishing–eliciting–connecting. How to:

  • explore the connection between resultant force and change in motion
  • draw out children's ideas about forces, persuading them to be explicit
  • connect scientific ideas of motion to the ideas that children already have

Teacher Tip: These are all related to findings about children's ideas from research. The teaching activities will provide some suggestions. So will colleagues, near and far.

Focusing on the physics:

Representing–noticing–recording. How to:

  • move from a description of forces acting on an object to a prediction of the motion of that object

Teacher Tip: Connecting what is experienced with what is written and drawn is essential to making sense of the connections between the theoretical world of physics and the lived-in world of the children. Don't forget to exemplify this action.

Newton's Second Law
is expressed by the relation F=ma
can be used to derive Kepler's First Law

Disable node explorer

2021 IOP Awards

Teachers of Physics Award

Recognising and celebrating outstanding contributions to the field of physics education.

Learn more