Top 10 pressure demos and videos for the new GCSE



Top 10 pressure demos and videos for the new GCSE

As I have started to teach the new AQA GCSE (2018) specification I thought I would share some of the demonstrations I have used to help explain the topics. As a non-specialist physics teacher, I felt the teacher specification could have explained what the students need to cover in more detai. I broke the spec down into various lessons. This series of lessons were taught with top set Y9 triple science, due to this reason I decided to use the true gas law names, these were not made explicit in the spec only the relationships. Some of the following may not be exactly true to the gas law however I believe they act as good models.

1)      What is pressure? Recap from KS3 (flipped learning/ H/W to watch this video), P=F/A. Modelling what is happening when we blow a balloon up?

2)      Enquiry into increasing depth, increasing pressure. Modelled with a displacement can with various holes in the side. Focussing on weight not density. Looking at dams and submarines and how they cope with intense pressure. Converting degrees Celsius to Kelvin.

3)      Summarising the two lessons above, embedding the idea of particles, energy, collisions and particles.  Video – Physics of diving

4)      Gay-Lussacs Pressure Law – Demos – candle on a plate of water, Egg in bottle, Boiling water with Ice, crushing can and give students data to graph and model

5)      Charles Law –Demos – putting balloon in ice and hot water , dented ping pong ball in hot water (can be done with a plastic water bottle as well)  model and then graph

6)      Boyles Law – demos – marshmallow in syringe or vacuum pump, make a Cartesian diver, balloon/lungs model model and graph



7)      Make sure graphs are correct with relationships clear. Get all students to explain what is happening to particles in each of the three gas laws, with diagrams. Work on the pV = constant. I will upload a #foldable I have created to support this.

8)      Use online assessment – plickers/quick-key/kahoot to assess learners and address any misconceptions.

This goes into far more depth than specification allows but should stretch and challenge triple scientists. I am also aware, pressure also appears in another area of the specification (forces) other than the particle model of matter. This section deals with the harder equations and understanding of atmospheric pressure and fluid pressure.

How have others approached this?

See my TES resources related to this here


2 thoughts on “Top 10 pressure demos and videos for the new GCSE

    1. Yes I saw that and planned to use it as well however the animation model simulation didn’t work the school network. Next time. Thanks for the input.


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