Force and Pressure are two different concepts in science.
But in every-day social language settings, these terms are used interchangeably:
“I was forced into it….”
“I was pressured into it …”
As a result of its use in every-day language, students often mix up these terms in science. This creates problems when students are learning about more complex and sophisticated concepts involving force or pressure higher up in the grades, or even at university level.
To be able to understand the behavior of gases, for example, it is critically important students know and understand the difference between ‘force’ and ‘pressure.’
In this lesson students not just carry out various activities to explore the concepts of force and pressure, they also explore the every-day uses of these terms. The lesson is therefore designed with a strong focus on developing students’ academic language. An analogy used here will help students to relate social use of these terms to the more scientific use.
The lesson is set up in four parts (Engagement, Exploration, Explanation, and Elaboration), equipment list, worksheets for the lab, and a homework assignment.