John Dell has written an opinion piece at the Washington Post on Thomas Jefferson High School in Virginia.
“The writer has taught physics at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology for 23 years.”
I currently serve as Director of the Modern Physics and Optics lab at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology.
This is my 23rd year teaching at TJ. For 20 years I taught the AP Physics-C course and sponsored the Physics Olympiad Team. I have introduced a number of post-AP physics courses, including Computational Physics, Electrodynamics, Quantum Mechanics, and Optics.
I am currently focused on teaching 3 distinct courses (see the photo above right for the effects of trying to manage this) and managing the lab experience for senior lab students. The courses are a two semester course on Electrodynamics and Intro to Quantum Mechanics, Computational Physics ( with an emphasis on Statistical Physics ), and an Experimentally-Centered Optics course. In the lab students pursue projects on Quantum Optics, Self Organizing Systems, Acoustics, Nano-Imaging, and Microwave Scattering &MetaMaterials.
John Dell is a Physics teacher at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology (TJ) (www.tjhsst.edu). He has been teaching gifted students physics and math for over 40 years beginning in the Hampshire College Summer Studies in Mathematics program in 1973.
He holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Maryland and has taught at Yale, the University of Windsor in Canada and served as the Director of the Research Science Institute, a summer science research program for high school students held at MIT each summer. He is the sponsor and mentor of more members of the United States Physics Olympic Team than any other physics teacher in the United States.
At TJ he teaches AP Physics-C and Computational Physics . In his Computational Physics class at TJ , Dr. Dell teaches physics with a view of DOING physics that emphasizes Physics as a quantitative modeling process where students spend most of their time working collaboratively to develop computational models of quantum systems .
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