Education Technology

Bell Ringer: Resolving Vectors

Published on 07/18/2010

Activity Overview

Students observe the relationship between a vector and its x- and y-components.

Key Steps

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    Students investigate the graphical resolution of a vector into perpendicular components. They first determine the relationship between the lengths of the three vectors (the Pythagorean theorem).

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    Next, students use trigonometric functions to calculate the lengths of the component vectors.

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    Finally, students confirm the trigonometric relationships and use them to solve several problems.