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published by the University of New South Wales
written by Joe Wolfe
This set of focused materials on Newton's Laws is part of the PhysClips collection of multimedia tutorials. Force interactions, inertial frames, and action-reaction are depicted in film clips, simulations, still images, and diagrams, many of which are interactive. Don't miss the lessons on Coriolis forces, Foucault's pendulum, and the physics of sailing. This resource is appropriate for algebra-based introductory physics courses.

Editor's Note: We recommend this resource for AP and algebra-based high school physics, and for all secondary science teachers wishing to update content knowledge of Newton's Laws and force interactions.

Please note that this resource requires Flash.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Classical Mechanics
- Applications of Newton's Laws
- Newton's First Law
- Newton's Second Law
- Newton's Third Law
Education Practices
- Technology
= Multimedia
- High School
- Lower Undergraduate
- Instructional Material
= Activity
= Interactive Simulation
= Tutorial
- Reference Material
- Audio/Visual
= Image/Image Set
= Movie/Animation
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Activity
- New teachers
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© 2006 School of Physics, University of New South Wales, Australia
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Australia License.
Coriolis, Foucault pendulum, Newton, Newton's Law simulation, film clips, force diagrams, force interaction, force simulations, forces, frame of reference, inertial mass, multimedia, net force, tutorial, video clips
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created October 2, 2011 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
October 2, 2011 by Caroline Hall
Last Update
when Cataloged:
August 31, 2010

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

3. The Nature of Technology

3A. Technology and Science
  • 9-12: 3A/H3b. One way science affects society is by stimulating and satisfying people's curiosity and enlarging or challenging their views of what the world is like.
  • 9-12: 3A/H4. Engineers use knowledge of science and technology, together with strategies of design, to solve practical problems. Scientific knowledge provides a means of estimating what the behavior of things will be even before they are made. Moreover, science often suggests new kinds of behavior that had not even been imagined before, and so leads to new technologies.

4. The Physical Setting

4F. Motion
  • 6-8: 4F/M3a. An unbalanced force acting on an object changes its speed or direction of motion, or both.
  • 6-8: 4F/M3b. If a force acts towards a single center, the object's path may curve into an orbit around the center.
  • 9-12: 4F/H1. The change in motion (direction or speed) of an object is proportional to the applied force and inversely proportional to the mass.
  • 9-12: 4F/H2. All motion is relative to whatever frame of reference is chosen, for there is no motionless frame from which to judge all motion.
  • 9-12: 4F/H4. Whenever one thing exerts a force on another, an equal amount of force is exerted back on it.
  • 9-12: 4F/H8. Any object maintains a constant speed and direction of motion unless an unbalanced outside force acts on it.

8. The Designed World

8B. Materials and Manufacturing
  • 9-12: 8B/H1. Manufacturing processes have been changed by improved tools and techniques based on more thorough scientific understanding, increases in the forces that can be applied and the temperatures that can be reached, and the availability of electronic controls that make operations occur more rapidly and consistently.

10. Historical Perspectives

10B. Uniting the Heavens and Earth
  • 9-12: 10B/H1. Isaac Newton, building on earlier descriptions of motion by Galileo, Kepler, and others, created a unified view of force and motion in which motion everywhere in the universe can be explained by the same few rules. Newton's system was based on the concepts of mass, force, and acceleration; his three laws of motion relating them; and a physical law stating that the force of gravity between any two objects in the universe depends only upon their masses and the distance between them.
  • 9-12: 10B/H5. Although overtaken in the 1900s by Einstein's relativity theory, Newton's ideas persist and are widely used. Moreover, his influence has extended far beyond physics and astronomy, serving as a model for other sciences and even raising philosophical questions about free will and the organization of social systems.
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Record Link
AIP Format
J. Wolfe, (University of New South Wales, Sydney, 2006), WWW Document, (http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html).
J. Wolfe, PhysClips: Newton's Laws, (University of New South Wales, Sydney, 2006), <http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html>.
APA Format
Wolfe, J. (2010, August 31). PhysClips: Newton's Laws. Retrieved March 28, 2017, from University of New South Wales: http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html
Chicago Format
Wolfe, Joe. PhysClips: Newton's Laws. Sydney: University of New South Wales, August 31, 2010. http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html (accessed 28 March 2017).
MLA Format
Wolfe, Joe. PhysClips: Newton's Laws. Sydney: University of New South Wales, 2006. 31 Aug. 2010. 28 Mar. 2017 <http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Joe Wolfe", Title = {PhysClips: Newton's Laws}, Publisher = {University of New South Wales}, Volume = {2017}, Number = {28 March 2017}, Month = {August 31, 2010}, Year = {2006} }
Refer Export Format

%A Joe Wolfe
%T PhysClips: Newton's Laws
%D August 31, 2010
%I University of New South Wales
%C Sydney
%U http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Wolfe, Joe
%D August 31, 2010
%T PhysClips: Newton's Laws
%I University of New South Wales
%V 2017
%N 28 March 2017
%8 August 31, 2010
%9 text/html
%U http://www.animations.physics.unsw.edu.au/mechanics/chapter5_Newton.html

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