back to school

We had 7 weeks of summer holiday this year and it still didn’t seem long enough!  Hope you had a great holiday and hope you remember to come back on Tuesday.  

So what about the exam results, then?


There were great performances at all levels, from Standard Grade to Advanced Higher.  Congratulations to you all!


Thanks to Jose Picardo for the animation.

Welcome back!

I hope that you enjoyed your summer break and are ready to get back to work in the Physics lab. For those of you already thinking about the October holidays, I thought I might suggest Butlins. They are running an interesting holiday idea with some Physics thrown in for free.

Physics holidays at Butlins

Free physics software for THS pupils!

The Physics department has purchased a 1 year site license for a really smart software package called Crocodile Physics.  The terms of the license allow any pupil in the school to download a copy for home use.  If you are interested, mac and windows versions of the software can be obtained by going to and logging in with the user name “student.thurso” and the password your teacher will give you (I can’t publish the password here).  Select Crocodile Physics from the drop-down menu and log in.  Go to the download section to get your copy of the software.

The site also contains sample models for you to download and try out.  Ask me if you want to know more about them.

Physics video competition on

I mentioned the 2007 Phylm competition to some of you this week. An American teacher has put up a prize of $100 for the best short film on a physics topic. The Phylm Prize, pronounced “film,” is an award aimed at spurring interest in physics and the educational use of new media.

The legal stuff and entry details are available in this competition rules document and there is an explanation available online in this youtube video clip.

Why am I telling you this? Well, the school has suitable digital video equipment and editing software† available to help anyone interested in producing a high quality entry – all you need is an idea for a film. Best of all, the money and prestige are all yours.

Think about it.

†If you ask nicely, you might get to use a shiny white apple laptop with iMovie.

Get your own FREE copy of the SQA data booklet!

The data booklet you use during your physics end-of-topic tests is available as a free download from the SQA website.  It’s a good idea to get hold of your own copy so you are familiar with where to find everything.  You can get the booklet here† (make sure you save a copy to your pc to save you downloading it again). 

†You will need the Adobe Acrobat Reader, get it here if you don’t have it already.