AP Physics 2

Course Syllabus ...& more

Fall - Spring


Mr. Tony Wayne


975-9300 extension 60265

Web Site:


Blog Schoology
Remind www.mrwaynesclass.com/remind

College Physics by Knight, Jones, and Field, 2011, 2nd Edition. Published by Pearson. Students must return the book(s) they have been issued at the end of the year. However, I do not use the textbook. Instead instruction will come from my website www.mrwaynesclass.com/ap2

Physics seeks to describe and predict natural events by seeking the relationships between motion, force, energy and time. Physics is at the root of all types of engineering; mechanical, electrical, nuclear, chemical, etcetera. This course will discuss the basics in fields of physics such as kinematics, dynamics, electricity, optics, nuclear, and etcetera. The curriculum will be that of the national AP Physics 2 guide. Topics will be covered on a college physics introductory level. The pace will be very fast.
Topics Covered:

below is a list of the topics we will cover and an optimistic view of when they will all be covered. Unfortunately these target dates do not include SAT days, snow days, my sick days, or interruptions on the, "Valentine's Day Thang." (Yes, that says, "Thang.") It is taught at very fast pace. Doing the homework and being in class is imperative.

A detailed list of objectives can be found here in my Physics Resource Book on Pages 7 -22 (Opens in a new window.) These objectives form the test questions. If you are wondering what to study, read the section of this document pertaining to the unit.

  • This means doing the work when it is assigned to become part of the class discussion.
  • Before an assessment, use the objectives as a check-off sheet of what you should know.
  • Before an assessment, do the online quizzes on the topics that you had difficulty with as indicated on the objectives.
  • Don't work the problems until you get one right, work to get them all correct.
  • Don't look at a problem and think, "Ah. I get it." Then move on. You still need to work the problem to engage more parts of your brain to help you understand.


These dates are target dates. The last date is the target test date.

Developing this time table is about the hardest thing have every done. 45 minutes classes that meet everyday 4 times a week during the pandemic.

I  Introduction and Review
   (8/23 - 2/8) 4 classes
A. Simple conversions
B. Significant figures
C. Review -Kinematics, Projectile Motion, & Energy in 3 days!
II. Fluid Mechanics
    (2/9 - 2/23) 9 classes
    Big Ideas: 1, 3, and 5 [CR2b]
    *1.E, 3.C, 5.B, and 5.F
A. Density and Pressure

1. Density and specific gravity
2. Pressure as a function of depth
3. Pascal's principle

B. Buoyancy

1. Buoyant force
2. Archimedes' principle

C. Fluid flow continuity
D. Bernoulli's Equation
III. Thermal Physics
     (2/24 - 3/11) 10 classes
     Big Ideas: 1, 4, 5, and 7 [CR2a]
     *1.E, 4.D, 4.E, 5.B, 7.A, and 7.B
A. Temperature and Heat

1. Mechanical equivalent of heat
2. Heat transfer and thermal expansion

B. Kinetic Theory

1. Ideal gases
2. Gas laws

C. Thermodynamics

1. Thermodynamic processes

a. Adiabatic
b. Isothermal
c. Isobaric
d. Isochoric
e. Cyclic

2. PV diagrams

a. Determining work done
b. Interpreting graphs

3. First Law of Thermodynamics

a. Internal energy
b. Energy conservation

4. Second Law of Thermodynamics

a. Entropy
b. Heat engines
c. Carnot cycle

IV. Electrostatics -
    (3/15 - 4/12 ) 13 classes
    Big Ideas: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 [CR2c] [CR2d]
    *1.E, 2.A, 2.C, 2.D, 2.E, 3.A, 3.C, 3.G, 4.E, 5.B, and 5.C
A. Electrostatics

1. Coulomb's Law
2. Electric Field

a. Force on a test charge
b. Field diagrams
c. Motion of particle in an E field

3. Electric Potential

a. Due to a group of charges
b. Potential difference
c. Work on a charge
d. Between parallel plates

4. Electrostatics with Conductors

a. Absence of E field in conductor
b. Equipotential
c. Charging by induction

V. Current Electricity -
    (4/13 - 4/22 ) 7 classes
    Big Ideas: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 [CR2c] [CR2d]
    *1.E, 2.A, 2.C, 2.D, 2.E, 3.A, 3.C, 3.G, 4.E, 5.B, and 5.C
B. Capacitors

1. Capacitance
2. Energy and charge stored
3. Parallel plates

C. Electric Current

1. Definition of direction of current
2. Ohm's Law
3. Resistance and Resistivity
4. Power

D. DC Circuits

1. Schematic diagrams/Kirchhoff's Laws
2. Resistors

a. In series
b. In parallel

4. Terminal voltage and internal resistance
5. Steady-state RC circuits

V. Magnetism
    (4/26 - 5/3 ) 6 classes
    Big Ideas: 2, 3, and 4 [CR2e]
    *1.E, 2.A, 2.B, 2.E, 3.G, 4.E, and 5.B
A. Magnetostatics

1. Magnetic field
2. Forces on moving charges
3. Forces on a current-carrying wire
4. Magnetic field of current-carrying wires

B. Electromagnetism

1. Magnetic flux
2. Faraday's Law and Lenz's Law
3. Induced emf and induced current

VI. Optics
     (5/4 - 5/26 (14 classes)
     Big Idea 6 [CR2f]
     *1.D, 5.D, 6.A, 6.B, 6.C, 6.D, 6.E, 6.F, and 6.G

A. Physical Optics

1. The electromagnetic spectrum
2. Interference

a. Two-source interference

3. Diffraction

a. Diffraction grating

4. Thin films

B. Geometric Optics

1. Reflection and refraction

a. Snell's Law
b. Total internal reflection

2. Images formed by mirrors

a. Ray diagrams
b. Thin lens/mirror equation

3. Images formed by lenses

a. Ray diagrams
b. Thin lens/mirror equation

VII. Atomic and Nuclear Physics
     (5/27 - 6/8) 7 classes
     Big Ideas: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 [CR2g]
     * 1.A, 1.B, 1.C, 1.D, 3.G, 4.C, 5.B, 5.D, 5.G, and 7.C

A. Atomic Physics and Quantum Effects

1. Discovery of the Electron and Atomic Nucleus

a. Cathode ray tube
b. Millikan's Oil Drop Experiment
c. Rutherford scattering

2. Photons and the Photoelectric Effect

a. Energy of a photon
b. Intensity and number of photons
c. Stopping potential

3. Bohr Model

a. Energy levels
b. Emission and absorption spectra
c. Transition between energy levels

4. DeBroglie Wavelength

a. Wavelength of Particles

5. Production of X-rays
6. Compton Scattering

B. Nuclear Physics

1. Atomic number, mass number, and atomic mass
2. Nuclear processes

a. Radioactive decay (alpha, beta, and gamma)
b. Fusion
c. Fission

3. Mass-Energy equivalence

VIII. Modern Physics and Review for AP Exams
      ( 6/8 - End of school year)

Students are expected to have a calculator with trigonometric functions. A graphing calculator is preferred but NOT REQUIRED.  If a student is thinking about buying a graphing calculator, buy a TI-83, TI-83 plus, TI-84 plus or TI-84 Plus silver edition. A graphing calculator will be used in lab for data collection and analysis. If a student does not have a graphing calculator, then they may use an online calculator like www.wolfframalpha.com or desmos.com on asignments other than tests and quizzes. Online or calculators or cellphones are not allowed on assessments. This is because they are not allowed on the AP exam either. You must use a graphing OR scientitifc calculator on tests and quizzes.


If you have a question or comment please email or call me at school. I check my phone messages every business day. You can expect a return call during the next business day -if I'm not absent the day your message is left.) I will respond to your email within 2 business days of receiving it. Even if I can't expound in my response, I will acknowledge your email. If you do not receive a response email, call me. No response usually means that your message has been quarantined by the county's spam filter. (It is very aggressive.) If your student has a question about an assignment or grade, please encourage him or her to talk with me. I'll listen.

Supplies for AP Physics
Plastic Eraser
It is suggested that students also purchase a "drafting" eraser like the "Hi-Polymer" by Pentel, or the Mars, plastic by Staedtler. The white rectangular shape makes this type of eraser easy to recognize. Drafting erasers work by lifting the graphite off the page and resist smudging the work. Rubber erasers work by sanding off the pencil marks and the paper under them. Now, many pencils come with this type of eraser on the end. It is usually white or some fluorescent color. ($1.25)

TI 84+ Calculator



Students are expected to have a calculator with trigonometric functions. It does not have to be a graphing calculator. Not graphing calculators range from $10 - $20. (The TI-30XIIs is a good non-graphing calculator choice. There other choices too.) But if a student is thinking about buying a graphing calculator, buy a TI-84 or TI-84 plus. ($125) This calculator will be used in lab for data collection and analysis. Classroom graphing and scientific calculators can be used by the student when they are available. Most of the classroom discussions involving calculators will use the TI-83 and TI-84. (I have an electric engraver that you can use to etch your name in the back of your calculator. Ask to use it before or after class.)
8.5" x 11" spiral notebook

Spiral bound 8.5" x 11" notebook. Choose lined or, (my favorite,) graph paper. This will be used to write all homework and class work problems. It must be spiral notebook. This is used as an organizational tool. It will also make studying for the semester exam easier. I would recommend 150 pages worth of notebook(s).

Not all graph paper notebooks are the same. Some graph paper notebooks have lines that are too dark to be used with a pencil. Look for a graph paper notebook with lighter lines.

Every student will receive a laptop running Windows. One thing I noticed when using these laptops was that the mouse pad was "touchy" for me, (I'm a mac user.) I purchased a small wireless mouse to be used with laptop. It has significantly reduced my frustrations. Many mice are one sale in August and September for about $10-20. Logictech makes an inexpensive($20/$30) mouse with a battery that lasts about 12 months. This is purely optional. It is a matter of taste.
Students will not be allowed to take notes on the laptops. They are to be written by hand. So students may need a notebook or folder to contain any notes and some handouts. In the past, some organizationally resistant students have had success with a brightly colored folder to house handouts and returned work. (Most handouts will be viewed on the computer but technology can't do everything better than pencil and paper.)
Text Messaging from Me

    I like to use Remind.com as a quick messaging system.  In the past I have not been a frequently sender of messages. I probably sent 10 messages during the fall semester. (Like when Zoom does not work or when we get a snow day ;-)) When signing up, protect your identity. Use your the first part your school’s email as your first name and for your last name use the 1st letter of your last name. Do not use your whole last name. If you do not want to receive text messages, you can receive emails instead. To receive emails, enter your SCHOOL email address in the space where is asks for your phone number. I have the Remind.com account setup so your cannot message anybody else or me. I only use it to disseminate urgent information. For everything else I will use school email. Every message that goes out on Remind.com will also be send out in an email to the student’s school email address. Its just that most people get it faster when it is a text message. Parents and guardians are welcome to sign up too. Any morning messages will be sent at 8:00 AM -just informing you. Instructions on how to sign up are found here, https://www.mrwaynesclass.com/remind/Physics2.html


Grades will be based on performance on tests, quizzes, activities and labs. Each assessment will be worth a certain amount of points. Typically:

  • Tests are worth 100 to 150 points
  • Quizzes are worth 20 to 50 points
  • Activities/Lab are worth 10 to 80 points

This year there are no nine weeks or semester grades. Instead there is one term and 1 grade for everything. If too many grades are entered in the grade book then after a while the year's grade will hardly change, even with dramatic grade changes. Each unit will have some kind of an assessment. This means at least 7 grades for the year in the grade book. "Homework" will not be graded. Homework will be checked.

Clsss Preparation Grades (Formally called "homework"

My class preparation grades as from assignments that are done outside of class. Typically these are now called "asynchronous assignments." There will be assignments like these nearly every class. But none, NONE, of these will count for a grade or towards the final grade.

There will be reported in PowerSchool as collected work. But not for a grade.


The class will follow the school's grading scale. All nine weeks' grades reported on the report card will be rounded to the nearest one's place; e.g. 89.532 becomes a 90 on the report card. However, the raw score will be used for semester averages. Semester averages will be rounded to the nearest one's place -like the nine weeks grades.

"Class Prep" assignments will appear in the PowerSchool's gradebook book as collected, missing or excused. If a "class prep" assignment is missing I will leave a comment quoting the students as to why it is missing. (These comments can be enlightening.)

Formative assignments, such as some activities, quizzes and other shorter assignments will not appear in the grade book. They are meant for learning. As such the are evaluated and discussed in class but a grade is not recorded. The nine weeks grade is determined by summative grades. A summative grades is a given after much feedback from class prep assignments and any non-recorded quizzes. These are usually thought of as unit tests and an occasional, more detailed, labs.

A 50% grade is assigned for any missing work until it is made up. A student will not be awarded a grade lower than a 50%.

Grade Progress

I will contact the parents or guardians via email or phone if a student receives a failing grade on a test or major lab.


No midterm or final exams


Make up & Missed Work

I am following school policies.

Honor Code

Students are to work independently, without any outside aide, on tests, quizzes, the research component of the project and "questions of the day." Student may work with others on homework, in class assignments, labs and activities.


The class will follow the school's attendance policy.

Wireless Device Policy
  • A ”wireless device” is anything that is capable of accessing the Internet. Such as, but not limited to, a netbook, laptop, iPad, iPod, iTouch, etcetera.
  • Only use wireless devices in class with the teacher's specific permission.
  • When asked to close your netbooks/laptops, close them and put other wireless devices away. You do not need to shut them down -only put them to sleep.
  • When allowed, wireless devices may only be used for work directly related to this class.
  • Wireless devices are to remain closed or put away during all tests and quizzes unless otherwise permitted by the teacher.
  • If the teacher walks around and you close your netbook or laptop when he/she walks by, it will be considered a sign that you are not using it for allowed purposes.

Anyone not agreeing to follow this policy must either not use a wireless device in class or accept that the wireless device will be recognized as a distraction and dealt with according to school policy.  This may include being prohibited from using device in the classroom for the rest of the semester or year.



The class will follow the school's attendance policy with one exception. Students who are tardy without an appropriate note will stay in class at least two minutes past the bell.

Make Up Work:

When a test has been missed, arrangements must be made within 2 days of returning to school to make up the missed work. The missed assignment must be made up within 2 weeks of returning to school. Failure to make up work will result in a zero for the assignment. An "incomplete" letter grade will be given for the 9 weeks to any student with an assignment not turned in by the end of a grading period. (Some flexibility will be afforded in certain extreme/unusual cases.)

Exam Exemptions

There are no exam exemptions.

2nd SEMESTER EXAM - There isn't one.
The second semester exam is replaced with a culminating programming project. Students will complete v-Python programming tutorials and create a physics project that uses v-Python. Students will have the time between the AP physics 2 exam and the end of school or graduation. More details will be given out in mid-April.
Web Site: [ You are on it right now ;-) ]

This class will have a web site, http://www.mrwaynesclass.com/AP. Working on the web is OPTIONAL. The web site will be a constant work in progress. The web site will contain:

  • Daily assignment blog
  • Documents distributed in class in either web form or as a PDF document.
  • Related topic links.
  • Animations and some lecture notes from class.
  • Tutorial links to other sites. (This web site will only contain links to legitimate, safe web sites. Once a student leaves the Albemarle County Schools server, we cannot be responsible for the paths they "surf" beyond the initial link.)
  • Some video tutorials on how to do more difficult problem types.
Mastery Learning
After taking a test, a student may take another test on the same topic. I will record the higher of the two grades. But, the right to take the mastery test has to be earned. This is demonstrated two ways.
By completing an additional assignment from the unit. Depending on the unit’s difficulty, students are usually given a weekend to work on the assignment. Student’s who do not understand how to do the problems need to see me or someone else for help. I am available before school and during most Patriot Periods.

This mastery assignment is checked for effort and completion and not absolute correctness. What “effort” looks like is discussed during every unit. Some notes, homework solutions, short videos highlighting the notes and/or problem solutions, and pretests are provided as on line resources. Students are to complete the mastery assignment on time. (This may mean seeing me during 8th period or before school starts for help.) The only way a due date extension is given, is if a parent or guardian writes a note explaining that the student was sick or was not able to work for other reasons. Late work, without a parent or guardian’s note, forfeits the right to take a mastery test.

The 4 minute YouTube video below is my description of how I do mastery learning.

This video can be found at http://youtu.be/KsRRc_rQblI
The mastery test applies only to unit tests.
Pre-Test Grades
Before each test, students are turn a summary page. I have template for students to use. This template can be picked up in any time in class, (blank ones sit next to the stapler and pencil sharpener, downloaded from a link in Schoology, or the 3 sections can be included on a piece of notebook paper. This summary page is a separate 6-point grade. Students who do not have the sheet ready before the test, cannot turn it in late. He or she will receive a "3" for the summary. The purpose of the summary sheet to act as a review BEFORE taking the test. That is why they are not accepted late.
Homework -"ClassPrep"

I do not give homework." I give "Class Prep" assignments. These assignments are meant to get ready for the next day of class. At the very beginning of class I will look at and provide individual verbal feedback to EVERY student on EVERY class-prep assignment. This will help me to gauge students' and the classes' understanding to see what adjustments I need to make in the beginning of class. Students will immediately work in randomized small groups to further check and understand the class prep. I will follow up to address additional questions and highlight some of the solutions students tend to have challenges with.

"Class Prep" assignments will appear in the PowerSchool's gradebook book as collected, missing, or excused. If a "class prep" assignment is missing I will leave a comment quoting the student as to why it is missing. (These comments can be enlightening.) When you the parent of guardian look at a students grade to see if they are understanding, Do not rely on the grade alone. You need to drill down into the grades to see is they are currently doing the work and if not, what they are saying about it in the missing work comments.

During days when school is postponed due to inclement weather, students are expected to check Schoology for a physics assignment. Assignments will be posted by mid morning in most circumstances. Reminders to check the blog will be sent to student emails, and by text on from me using Remind.com. Students without power or Internet are not held responsible for the grade on the assignment but they are responsible for the material covered on any following assessments.
Attendance (This is the division's policy for all classes.)

The last 2 years have been very difficult regarding student attendance during the pandemic. We recognize the strong correlation between student attendance in class and strong academic performance. All ACPS high schools will provide the following guidelines as it pertains to attendance this school year.

  1. Parents/guardians of students who are absent must inform the school of the reason for the absence (school attendance office) no later than upon the student’s return to school. If no reason is provided within five (5) days, the absence will be unexcused.
  2. Students with excessive absences, excused or unexcused, are subject to loss of credit. At 10 absences for ONE PARTICULAR CLASS during the year, excused or unexcused for a class period, the principal has the right to deny credit for that course regardless of the student’s grade in that particular class. In order to recover this time and earn the credit, they will be required to attend an after-school or Saturday school program in place of excused absences. Medical conditions and hardships will be handled on a case by case basis.
Due Dates (This is the division's policy for all classes.)
  1. Students can turn in graded work up to two weeks after the due date. After two weeks, the assignment is recorded as MISSING with a 50% in the gradebook. There is an appeals process for the student for work submitted after the two week deadline.
  2. A student can be required to complete Essential Assessments in order to receive credit for the class. Essential Assessments will be noted in the course syllabus and gradebook.
A little more explanation...
Suppose an assessment is administered on Monday you miss the test. The assessment is returned in Wednesday. The two week deadline starts on first the day the assessment is returned. Eventhough you did not take the test on the original date it was given, your deadline is also set by the original test. This 2 week deadline is to make up the oringal test and complete teh mastery test if you choose to do so.
Grading/Assessments (This is the division's policy for all classes.)
  1. Cell phone use is prohibited during instructional periods; cell phones must remain silenced and out of sight. School-provided technology will be used to support learning and accessibility needs.
  2. All other communication devices (e.g., smart watches) shall be off or away during instruction.
  3. Students may use cell phones before the start of the school day, between classes, during lunch, and after school.
  4. Students may not use cell phones in the restrooms or in the locker rooms of the school. Students may use cell phones for instruction when deemed necessary by a 504 plan or IEP team, for medical purposes, and for translation.
  5. In the event of an emergency or other unforeseen circumstance, students should notify their teacher of the need to use their phone. With the approval of the teacher, the student will be permitted to go to use their cell phone. Office staff will provide a confidential space for students to use the phone as needed.



by Tony Wayne ...(If you are a teacher, please feel free to use these resources in your teaching.)

The owner of this website does not collect cookies when the site is visited. However, this site uses and or embeds Adobe, Apple, GoDaddy, Google, and YouTube products. These companies collect cookies when their producs are used on my pages. Click here to go to them to find out more about how they use their cookies. If you do not agree with any of their policies then leave this site now.