Academic Standard

Tennessee State Standards
Science (2009-2018)
Grade range: 
9 to 12
Subject = Physics
Mechanics is perhaps the broadest topic within the study of natural law or physics. The study of mechanics explains the rules of how objects move. The forces that hold the planets to the sun, the energy of a tidal wave, the nature of black holes, are all described within mechanics. Predicting the outcome of collisions between atoms or asteroids is also part of the mechanical realm as is how a massive aircraft carrier floats. Conceptual StrandLaws of mechanics are the foundations of classical physics.Guiding QuestionHow do the laws of mechanics govern the basic understanding of classical physics?
Elements within this Standard
Course Level Expectation
Investigate fundamental physical quantities of length, mass, and time.
Analyze and apply Newtons three laws of motion.
Understand work, energy, and power.
Investigate kinematics and dynamics.
Investigate and apply Archimedess Principle.
Explore Pascals Principle.
Develop an understanding of Bernoullis Principle and its applications.
Check For Understanding
Explore displacement, velocity, and acceleration [Average Velocity: vav = (df-di)/ (tf-ti); Final Velocity: vf = vi+a?t; Final Velocity of Falling: vf = vi+g?t;
Analyze vector diagrams and solve composition and resolution problems for force and momentum.
Explore characteristics of rectilinear motion and create displacement-time graphs (velocity), velocity-time graphs (acceleration and distance).
Investigate the characteristics of centripetal motion and centripetal acceleration [Centripetal Force: Fc = (mv2)/r; Angular Velocity: ?=? ?/?t; Angular
Evaluate the dynamics of systems in motion including friction, gravity, impulse and momentum, change in momentum, and conservation of momentum. [Coefficient of
Investigate projectile motion. (Parabolic Equations with the Quadratic Formula)
Apply mathematics to solve motion problems.
Experiment with elastic and inelastic collisions.
Experiment with pendulums.
Utilize trigonometry and vector analysis to solve force and momentum problems [Sine, Cosine, Tangent Functions, Law of Sine, and Law of Cosine].
Apply elementary calculus to solve motion problems [Velocity = derivative of and acceleration = derivative of velocity].
Experiment with elastic and inelastic collisions [Elastic Collisions in One Dimension: m1v1 + m2v2 = m1v3+m2v4; Inelastic Collision in One Dimension: m1v1+m2v2
Distinguish between mass and weight using base units in the SI system.
Associate time with the independent variable in most experiments.
Relate inertia, force, or action-reaction forces to Newtons three laws of motion.
Compare, contrast, and apply characteristic properties of scalar and vector quantities.
Investigate the definitions of force, work, power, kinetic energy, and potential energy. [Force: F = ma; Work: W = Fd; Power: P = (F?d)/ ?t; Kinetic Energy: EK
Analyze the characteristics of energy, conservation of energy including friction, and gravitational potential energy [Gravitational Potential Energy: Ep=mg?h].
Relate work and power to various simple machines, mechanical advantage of different machines, and recognize simple machines that are combined to form compound
Describe rotational equilibrium and relate this factor to torque [Rotational Inertia: T = I?; Torque: T = Fr].
Determine the magnitude of the buoyant force exerted on a floating object or a submerged object (FB = mfg = ?fVfg).
Investigate the apparent weight of an object submerged in a fluid (Fnet = FB Fg).
Explain, in terms of force and/or density, why some objects float and some objects sink.
Calculate the pressure exerted by a fluid according to Pascals Principle (Pinc = F1/A1 = F2/A2).
Calculate how pressure varies with water depth (P = P0 + ?gh).
Examine the motion of a fluid using the continuity equation (A1v1 = A2v2).
Recognize the effects of Bernoullis principle on fluid motion and its applications (i.e. lift, curve balls, and wind around/over object).
State Performance Indicator
Identify mass and weight data using units in the SI system.
Given various examples of quantities, categorize them as scalar or vector quantities.
Given Newtons laws of motion, analyze scenarios related to inertia, force, and action-reaction.
Solve motion and conceptual problems regarding velocity, acceleration, and displacement using displacement-time graphs and velocity-time graphs.
Solve problems for friction, gravity, impulse, and momentum using the provided formula card.
Given the static and kinetic friction coefficients; select the appropriate coefficient of friction and calculate the force necessary to move the object.
Select the correct vector diagram to illustrate all forces on an object affected by gravity, friction and an applied force.
Given an inclined plane, the required coefficient of friction and an object of a specific mass, select the appropriate trigonometry functions to determine
Given the mass, velocity and time it takes to stop an object in an inelastic collision, determine the momentum and impulse of the collision.
Analyze and solve problems related to elastic and inelastic collisions related to change in momentum.
Given a projectile launched at an angle, select the correct equation from a list for calculating: the maximum height of travel, time of flight and/or the
Given a scenario where a projectile is being launched at an angle, answer the following conceptual questions. What is the velocity in the y direction when the
Given various examples of quantities, categorize them as scalar or vector quantities.
Relate the variables of work, power, kinetic energy, and potential energy to mechanical situations and solve for these variables.
Calculate the gravitational attraction between two objects.
Solve rotational inertia and torque problems using the formula card.
Solve problems for centripetal force, and angular acceleration.
Analyze and solve problems related to rotational motion and torque.
Calculate the pressure exerted by a fluid according to Pascals Principle.
Calculate how pressure varies with water depth.
Using the continuity equation, solve problems related to the motion of a fluid.
Choose examples that show the effects of Bernoullis principle.