Saturday, March 10, 2012

PHYSiCS—you don't want to miss it

The "Take Physics—Understand the Universe" ad campaign dates back to the mid-'90s.

At its inception, it increased Physics enrollment from 4 sections to 6 sections. A minor panic ensued: there were too many students for me to teach. I was offered the opportunity to teach a 6/5ths schedule: 6 periods of instruction and no prep period; close to 200 students and no prep period. The pay would be 120%, though. I turned it down in less than one second.

Some students (juniors and sophomores) had to be denied enrollment in Physics. I was asked to draw names out of a hat. Again, I declined. "But it's your fault! You did all that advertising." I didn't disagree. And I didn't draw the names. The next year we hired a second physics teacher.

That teacher recently retired, and Physics enrollment has declined. As it was for the first 12 years of my career, I'm the only physics teacher at Rio.

I decided it was time to refresh the ad campaign. New slogan, new fonts. But most of the ad content remains unchanged.

Ad 1: Expectations of Entering Freshmen

Ad 2 Series: Wonder (3 pages)

Ad 3 Series: Do These Things (2 pages)

Ad 4 Series: Lies! (2 pages)


As always, I print these to "Neon Paper." This paper has a fluorescent coating on one side. It's very bright. And it's hard to find. Of late, it's not to be found at any of the office supply big-box stores. Nor could I find it at specialty paper warehouse suppliers in Sacramento. Amazon saved the day:

Pacon Neon Bond Copy Paper, 24 lb, Letter, Five Assorted Colors, 100 Sheets

I also produce an ink-draining poster that incorporates Storm Thorgerson's Dark Side of the Moon design, printed at 17"x22". I updated this one, too. My Epson Stylus Pro 3880 is large ink tanks; I can watch the matte black ink level drop during a single print.

Dark Side of the Moon Physics Ad

I also expanded into Français and Español for posting in the school's French and Spanish classrooms.

Ad 2 Series: Français - Español
I translated my original text via Apple's translation widget, than allowed the school's language instructors correct for proper usage/syntax given the context. The only non-English language I ever studied was BASIC. I'm not proud of that, and even that was a long time ago.

DSotM: Français - Español


Anonymous said...

Here is a slogan I use:

Biologists concentrate all the energy and knowledge on one small planet that orbits an average star where life is known to exist.

Chemists only care about the electrons on atoms.

But Physicists study the entire universe! From the smallest particles to the edge of the observable universe. So if you want to know about the entire universe then study Physics!

Dean Baird said...

The challenge I impose on myself is that of promoting physics WITHOUT demoting any other area of science or any other course of study for that matter.

One of my most compelling posters is a call for students to take a year of bio, a year of chem, and a year of physics.