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What do students learn about Isaac Newton in school?

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Quick Answer

In their school science classes, students learn about Isaac Newton's laws of motion and his work on understanding gravity. Students in history classes may learn about Newton's philosophical writings, and in advanced math classes, they could cover Newton's contribution to calculus.

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Full Answer

Students typically learn about Newton's laws of motion while studying physics, although lessons on the overall concept may be presented to students in elementary and middle school. Students in the sixth grade or below may learn about the laws of motion through in-class demonstrations.

Students between grades six and eight usually study the practical uses of the laws of motion through real-world examples, such as learning how airplanes are able to fly. They may also study the laws of motion through mathematical worksheets, learning famous formulas such as "force equals acceleration times mass" and "distance traveled equals velocity multiplied by time."

More advanced versions of these lessons that are appropriate for high school students may involve creating and graphing data sets and understanding the different kinds of motion that an object is experiencing. Upper-level high school students may be asked to apply the mathematics of the laws of motion to different concepts, such as vortices, thrust, lift and drag, and to measure these concepts for use in calculations.

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