C-STEM Photogate Lesson Plan


Students will assess their athletic form by designing experiments to correlate speed with height.


Arduino, breadboard, photo-resistor, laser, stopwatch, and photogate application.

  • Additional material can be incorporated in order to stimulate creative problem solving in the student’s hypothesis


  1. Discussion
    • Who here plays a sport?
    • Can you show or describe to me what is athletic form?
      • Students generate examples
    • How can athletic form affect the performance of an athlete?
      • Explain how different forms can affect results differently, give examples (have student throw a ball 2 ways)
    • How can we measure form?
      • Students generate examples
    • In what ways can we use technology to measure form?
      • Students generate examples (but have an example of our own to help them out)
      • Provide example of the jump plate peer-reviewed journal
  2. Introduce Students to Rarámuri Tribe
    • What do you think makes them successful?
    • Break down the actual techniques that make them successful
    • Ask if we can quantify these
    • Show video of Fire Feet
  3. Introduce Photogate
    • Show what it measures
    • Explain technical information at a higher level
    • Show how to build
    • Measure running form
    • Student Roles:
      • Student running
      • Student on the timer
      • Student counting runners steps
    • Calculate the pace, compare to the height
    • Have students break into groups and build their own
  4. Student Design Activity
    • Students brainstorm with or without additional materials provided
    • Students to create a hypothesis to test
    • Students test hypothesis
    • Students present their hypothesis to the group
  5. Post Activity Wrap-up
    • Discuss the possibilities that technology can enable us to measure
    • Reflect on lessons discussed today


Students will be assessed on their ability to use the scientific method in designing a “form measuring” assessment