This is the absolute best, most complete high school level Physics course designed for kids who not only want to learn what physics is by doing it themselves, but also have greater ambitions and need to know this physics stuff so they can get paid in the real world to launch rockets to distant moons, build real working robots, develop new kinds of lasers, break the sound barrier several times over, and so much more.

The Introductory Physics course helps students recognize the nature and scope of physics and its relationship to the other sciences. Students will learn about basic topics such as motion, forces, energy, momentum, heat and heat transfer, waves, electricity, and magnetism. Students will be engaged in scientific inquiry, investigations, and labs so that they develop a conceptual understanding and basic scientific skills. The mathematics prerequisite skills are based on middle school mathematics topics such as data analysis, measurement, scientific notation, ratio and proportion, and algebraic expressions.

This course will not only prepare you for the ACT, SAT, DSST, and AP exams, it will also give you more than a solid foundation when you hit the college level. You can save time and money by finishing part of your college degree right alongside your high school work by testing out of classes using this physics course. You don’t have to be a genius in order to do this – anyone can do it that works through this course, and I am here to help you every step of the way.

Be sure to take out a notebook and copy down each example problem right along with me so you take good notes as you go along. It’s a totally different experience when you are actively involved by writing down and working through each problem rather than passively sitting back and watching.

Beware! Physics is based in math. Now before you panic or roll your eyes, note that you don’t need a high level of math in order to complete this course. I am going to walk you through every step of the way, and it’s best if you learn the math right alongside the science so that you can really understand why you’re learning that math stuff in the first place.

Step 1: Get organized.

You’ll need a three-ring binder, a pencil, and a printer, because this course has a lot of physics experiments, many of which have downloadable worksheets and data sheets that you can print out. I recommend building your science notebook incrementally as you go along, using a three hole punch on the worksheets you print out and complete and sticking it in a binder. You can also print out the individual homework sets that accompany each section, complete those and also stick them in the binder. Snap photos of yourself doing the experiments and paste them in, and you’ll have one amazing science notebook journal at the end of the year!

Download your Schedule Outline here.

If you’d like to keep a more rigorous science journal, you’ll want to check out my complete How to Keep  Scientific Journal instructions. These are the ones I had my college students prepare with every lab they performed.

Step 2: Watch videos below in order.

You can jump around within this course, however it’s important to watch the first couple of videos in order before you launch into the course. There’s over 500 videos, about half of which are instructional content-type of videos, and the rest are experiment videos. They are both interspersed together so you get to do experiments as you learn about the concepts and academics at the same time.

You’ll also learn how to design experiments so you can measure and take data, make sense of your data and turn it into not only results to a problem, but make solutions and recommendations based on scientific evidence through the experiments they set up themselves. You can start by clicking on the links below, which will take you to a section of reading, instructional videos, and hands-on experiment labs, where you’ll see these concepts really come to life. You can go in any order, but it’s best if you do it from top to bottom as these concepts build on each other.

Here’s how to navigate through the website. Note that we’re re-structuring the navigation shortly, now that the bulk of the content is complete and published, so look for easier to use navigation soon! In the meantime, I made a quick video to show you how to get around in this area:

How to Get Started Right Now:

NOTE: There are 500+ videos embedded in the 50 sections that make up the 14 chapters listed below. Plan to spend about one week per 1-2 sections. You can do as many of the labs as you have equipment for (there are a lot to choose from!).

I. One-Dimensional Kinematics

1. Introduction

  • Scalars and Vectors
  • Distance and Displacement
  • Speed and Velocity
  • Acceleration

3. Describing Motion with Equations

  • Kinematic Equations and Problem-Solving
  • Free Fall and the Kinematic Equations
  • How to use Kinematic Equations and Graphs

2.Describing Motion with Diagrams

  • Vector Diagrams
  • Graphing
  • The position-time “p-t” graph
  • The velocity-time “v-t” graph

4. Free Fall and the Acceleration of Gravity

  • Acceleration of Gravity
  • Graphing Free Fall Motion
  • Gravity

II. Newton’s Laws

1. Newton’s First Law of Motion

  • Newton’s First Law
  • Inertia and Mass
  • State of Motion
  • Balanced and Unbalanced Forces

3. Newton’s Second Law of Motion

  • Newton’s Second Law
  • Finding Acceleration
  • Finding Individual Forces
  • Free Fall and Air Resistance

2. Forces

  • The Meaning of Force
  • Types of Forces
  • Drawing Free-Body Diagrams
  • Determining the Net Force

4. Newton’s Third Law of Motion

  • Newton’s Third Law
  • Identifying Action and Reaction Force Pairs

5. Applying Newton’s Laws of Motion

  • Solving Problem Practice
  • Coordinate Systems

III. Two Dimensional Kinematics

1. Vectors

  • Vector Components
  • Relative Velocity Problems
  • Independence of Perpendicular Components of Motion

2. Projectile Motion

  • What is a Projectile?
  • Horizontal and Vertical Components of Velocity
  • Horizontal and Vertical Displacement
  • Initial Velocity Components
  • Horizontally Launched Projectiles
  • Non-Horizontally Launched Projectiles

IV. Conservation of Momentum

1. Momentum

  • Momentum and Impulse Connection
  • Momentum Conservation Principle
  • Isolated Systems
  • Equations as a Guide to Thinking
  • Momentum Conservation in Explosions

V. Work, Energy, and Power

1. Basic Concepts

  • Work Defined
  • Potential Energy
  • Kinetic Energy
  • Mechanical Energy
  • Power

2. The Work-Energy Relationship

  • Internal vs. External Forces
  • Analysis of Situations Involving External Forces
  • Analysis of Situations in Which Mechanical Energy is Conserved
  • Application and Practice Questions

VI. Circular Motion

1. Characteristics for Circular Motion

  • Speed and Velocity
  • Acceleration
  • Centripetal Force
  • Applications of Circular Motion

3. Planetary and Satellite Motion

  • Kepler’s Three Laws
  • Circular Motion Principles for Satellites
  • Mathematics of Satellite Motion
  • Weightlessness in Orbit
  • Energy Relationships for Satellites

2. Universal Gravitation

  • Inverse Square Law
  • Newton’s Law of Universal Gravitation
  • The Value of g

VII. Thermodynamics

1. Thermal Physics

  • Temperature and Thermometers
  • What is Heat?
  • Methods of Heat Transfer
  • Rates of Heat Transfer
  • What Does Heat Do?
  • Measuring the Quantity of Heat
  • Calorimeters and Calorimetry

VIII. Static Electricity

1. Basic Terminology and Concepts

  • The Structure of Matter
  • Neutral vs. Charged Objects
  • Charge Interactions
  • Conductors and Insulators
  • Polarization

3. Electric Force

  • Charge Interactions Revisited
  • Coulomb’s Law
  • Inverse Square Law
  • Newton’s Laws and the Electrical Force

2. Charging Methods

  • Charging by Friction
  • Charging by Induction
  • Charging by Conduction
  • Grounding – the Removal of a Charge

4. Electric Fields

  • Action-at-a-Distance
  • Electric Field Intensity
  • Electric Field Lines
  • Electric Fields and Conductors
  • Lightning

IX. Current Electricity

1. Electric Potential Difference

  • Electric Field and the Movement of Charge
  • Electric Potential
  • Electric Potential Difference

3. Electrical Resistance

  • Journey of a Typical Electron
  • Resistance
  • Ohm’s Law
  • Power Revisited

2. Electric Current

  • What is an Electric Circuit?
  • Requirements of a Circuit
  • Electric Current
  • Power: Putting Charges to Work
  • Common Misconceptions Regarding Electric Circuits

4. Circuit Connections

  • Circuit Symbols and Circuit Diagrams
  • Two Types of Connections
  • Series Circuits
  • Parallel Circuits
  • Combination Circuits

X. Waves

1. Vibrations

  • Vibrational Motion
  • Properties of Periodic Motion
  • Pendulum Motion
  • Motion of a Mass on a Spring

4. Behavior of Waves

  • Boundary Behavior
  • Reflection, Refraction, and Diffraction
  • Interference of Waves
  • The Doppler Effect

2. The Nature of a Wave

  • Waves and Wavelike Motion
  • What is a Wave?
  • Categories of Waves

5. Standing Waves

  • Nodes and Anti-nodes
  • Harmonics and Patterns
  • Mathematics of Standing Waves

3. Properties of a Wave

  • The Anatomy of a Wave
  • Frequency and Period of a Wave
  • Energy Transport and the Amplitude of a Wave
  • The Speed of a Wave
  • The Wave Equation

XI. Sound Waves

1. The Nature of a Sound Wave

  • Sound is a Mechanical Wave
  • Sound as a Longitudinal Wave
  • Sound is a Pressure Wave

4. Resonance and Standing Waves

  • Natural Frequency
  • Forced Vibration
  • Standing Wave Patterns
  • Fundamental Frequency and Harmonics

2. Sound Properties

  • Pitch and Frequency
  • Intensity and the Decibel Scale
  • The Speed of Sound
  • The Human Ear

5. Physics of Musical Instruments

  • Resonance
  • Guitar Strings
  • Open-End Air Columns
  • Closed-End Air Columns

3. Behavior of Sound Waves

  • Interference and Beats
  • The Doppler Effect and Shock Waves
  • Boundary Behavior
  • Reflection, Refraction, and Diffraction

XII. Light Waves

1. How Do We Know Light is a Wave?

  • Wavelike Behaviors of Light
  • Two Point Source Interference
  • Thin Film Interference
  • Polarization

3. Two-Point Source Interference

  • Anatomy of a Two-Point Source Interference Pattern
  • The Path Difference
  • Young’s Equation
  • Young’s Experiment

2. Color and Vision

  • The Electromagnetic and Visible Spectra
  • Visible Light and the Eye’s Response
  • Light Absorption, Reflection, and Transmission
  • Color Addition
  • Color Subtraction
  • Blue Skies and Red Sunsets

XIII. Reflection

1. Reflection and its Importance

  • The Role of Light to Sight
  • The Line of Sight
  • The Law of Reflection
  • Specular vs. Diffuse Reflection

3. Concave Mirrors

  • The Anatomy of a Curved Mirror
  • Reflection of Light and Image Formation
  • Ray Diagrams
  • The Mirror Equation
  • Spherical Aberration

2. Image Formation in Plane Mirrors

  • Why is an Image Formed?
  • Image Characteristics in Plane Mirrors
  • Ray Diagrams for Plane Mirrors
  • What Portion of a Mirror is Required to View an Image?
  • Right Angle Mirrors

4. Convex Mirrors

  • Reflection and Image Formation for Convex Mirrors
  • Ray Diagrams – Convex Mirrors
  • Image Characteristics for Convex Mirrors
  • The Mirror Equation – Convex Mirrors

XIV. Refraction

1. Refraction at a Boundary

  • Boundary Behavior
  • Refraction and Sight
  • Optical Density and Light Speed
  • The Direction of Bending

4. Interesting Refraction Phenomena

  • Dispersion of Light by Prisms
  • Rainbow Formation
  • Mirages

2. The Mathematics of Refraction

  • The Angle of Refraction
  • Snell’s Law
  • Ray Tracing and Problem-Solving
  • Determination of n Values

5. Image Formation by Lenses

  • The Anatomy of a Lens
  • Refraction by Lenses
  • Image Formation Revisited
  • Converging & Diverging Lenses
  • The Mathematics of Lenses

3. Total Internal Reflection

  • Boundary Behavior Revisited
  • Total Internal Reflection
  • The Critical Angle

6. The Eye

  • The Anatomy of the Eye
  • Image Formation and Detection
  • Farsightedness & Nearsightedness

XV. Test Practice Sessions

Click here to go to your VERY LAST lesson… Dream BIG!