# How can I make my younger brother's interest in physics at home? [closed]

This is a soft question. I have a younger brother who is in 10th standard but he don't like subject of physics at all. When I asked reason for it he says he gets bored in mugging the formulas of physics theorem that are taught in his school. He don't like theortical explaination but when I explain it with any practical example,he understand it clearly.

For example, to show that light is made of different colors, I put prism .When light is passed through it , the white light gets spit into different colors.

It's like image is equal to thousand words.

So can anyone suggest any experiment (not of any perticular theorem ) that can be possible to carry out at home or ourselves to make interest and increase interest in physics and physical phenomena so that children find it simple to study subject of physics ?

• coolscienceclub.tripod.com/id6.html – Matt Jun 21 '16 at 12:53
• Veritasium? aka element 42.0, probably the first hit on Google. I guess it focuses on misconceptions, but often that's the interesting part: "what you know ain't so." – Declan Jun 21 '16 at 13:08
• "What can I show my brother to get him interested in physics?" seems very broad (too many possible answers) – pentane Jun 21 '16 at 13:22
• @pentane yes I agree that there could be many possible answers but this is soft question and if you check other stackexchange sites ,there have allowed such questions as soft question. Also, is it necessary that every question on this site should have particular solution(/s)? – pandu Jun 21 '16 at 13:48
• Our stance here is that yes, all questions should have objective answers. Moreover our scope is just physics, not the teaching or culture around physics. (Unfortunately there exist some relic tags from many years ago before the site had established its identity.) I can't make any guarantees, but you might try Parenting for suggestions on developing children's interest in science. – user10851 Jun 21 '16 at 15:29

10th grade is 15/16 years old right? Even if i'm more for a theoretical approach I think that age should be the age of experiments. He clearly doesn't have the mathematical background to do "real" theoretical physics. They just probably try to shove formulas into his head without explanations. I advice you to keep going with these kind of experiments, maybe if you have time you can make them more quantitative in order to have an application of those formulas. You can show him conservation of momentum with some balls, you can show him conservation of angular momentum just with a rotating bar and some weights on it (you move the weights during rotation so the moment of inertia changes and consequently the angular velocity). Mechanics is probably the most boring field from an experimental point of view. If you get him interested in fluid dynamics or electromagnetism you could have way more fun I think. And as regards fluid dynamics, if his math is not good enough he's just like the best mathematicians and physicist in the world (Navier-Stokes equation).

About the theoretical part, I think you should make him appreciate the beauty of the formulas, trying to explain them to him, to make him guess what happens if you modify a physical quantity. Then do an experiment to see if he guessed right. In this way he'll learn he can make predictions out of formulas. Try to explain how fantastic those formulas are and where they come from, how they are not so banal. Like ${\bf{F}}=m\bf{a}$ is not an equation, it's not something to solve. It's the most basic principle of the whole classical mechanics. It relates 3 different quantities which may exist independently from the other ones, but nature put a restriction on them.

To conclude. If it's just a teaching problem he may be (like the majority of the people in my opinion) inclined to physics without knowing it. You gotta consider the fact that he may be totally disinterested in it, in this case, forcing him to learn all that stuff my not be right in my opinion.

• He's 15/16? Find some cute girls who think physics is cool. – mmesser314 Jun 21 '16 at 13:54
• I agree with pretty much all of what you said, but I know a large number of very smart people in the biotech industry, all of whom are PhDs in chemistry, biochemistry, have a medical degree etc. and they are all running when they are hearing the word "physics". It's not that these people don't have the right intellectual qualities, they most certainly do and they can deal with systems that are, on average, far more complex than the ones we are dealing with, but there is something structural about the way physicists think (reductionism) that makes many even highly educated people uncomfortable. – CuriousOne Jun 21 '16 at 19:57
• @CuriousOne I gotta agree with you. But those are already formed minds. In my opinion almost every kid has a basic inclination to physics, a very intuitive and experimental kind of inclination. Then I agree on the fact that when it comes to actually study it and formalize it it may be unpleasant for most of the people. But I think the inclination is there. About reductionism, excluding math from sciences physics is the most reductionist one, and that is it's force. Exam of electromagnetism: at the end of the day you learn 4 formulas to explain an incredibly HUGE variety of natural phenomena. – RenatoRenatoRenato Jun 21 '16 at 20:57
• Chemistry exam: Learn a lot of unsignificant(from a physical point of view) rules with no general validity, which apply just in some cases, to solve a special case. Other cases other rules. I admire who does that, and I like to know the informations chemistry, like other science give us, i just don't get how a mind can like those or prefer them to physics. Maybe it's this lack of understanding other kind of minds that makes me think almost everybody probably have an inclination to physics. – RenatoRenatoRenato Jun 21 '16 at 21:00
• I wish I could put my finger on what it is that causes so much frustration for many with physics. I know that there are components in the way we teach it that are problematic, but they are problematic for students and physics teachers, alike. My high school teacher told me that he knew from experience that teaching Newton with force gauges leads to kids identifying forces with spring elongation, rather than acceleration of test masses. He had a number of these "pitfalls" for the average student and he was very unhappy that he didn't manage to work around them. – CuriousOne Jun 21 '16 at 21:01

Tell him how to build an atomic bomb. Kids loves it.

In principle: