Interview with Bloom Physics teacher Elmir Jugo.
BLOOM STUDENTS DID A FANTASTIC JOB AT THE STARI GRAD MUNICIPALITY AND CANTON SARAJEVO PHYSICS COMPETITIONS. WHAT ARE THE MOST VALUABLE EXPERIENCES THAT STUDENTS GET FROM PARTICIPATING IN COMPETITIONS?
Our students did a fantastic job at the last municipal and canton competition, and we should be really proud of them, as I am myself. From my perspective, this is a unique experience for every student because they have a chance to show their knowledge and apply everything they already know in the best possible way. Being awarded for your knowledge is the best possible thing that one student can get! I am hoping that they will continue with great success in the future.
YOU ARE CLEARLY VERY PASSIONATE ABOUT PHYSICS, IS IT IN YOUR GENES, OR?
Well, Albert Einstein said “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious”. I can say that I am guided by his statement. Science is all about learning how everything works. Just look at something, then take it apart, investigate it to figure out the laws that make it run.
Science helps satisfy the natural curiosity with which we are all born: why is the sky blue? How did the leopard get its spots? What is a supernova? With science, we can answer such questions without resorting to magical explanations. Physics is one of the most fundamental scientific disciplines and its main goal is to understand how the universe behaves. From the smallest quark to the largest superclusters of galaxies.
WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR MOST SUCCESSFUL STRATEGIES FOR ENGAGING LEARNERS?
I don't have a well-defined strategy, but I’m trying to make every child curious about what they learn in my classes. With curiosity, everything becomes easier and more fun. For me, the best option is to connect physical phenomena with everyday life, and present it in mathematical language as the universal language. Mathematical proof is the final piece of a puzzle for every physics problem, and the reward for your understanding of natural phenomena.
WHICH ASPECTS OF PHYSICS DO STUDENTS FIND MOST FASCINATING?
Generally speaking, Physics is really interesting and helps us to understand how the world around us works, from can openers, light bulbs and cell phones to muscles, lungs and brains, from cars, piccolos to cameras, from earthquakes, tsunamis and hurricanes to quarks, DNA and black holes.
Most of my students love exotic physics, discussion about the universe and its parts: nebulas or "star nurseries"; the birth of a star; the explosion of a star; how our Sun works. Although it is not something that they learn in primary school, I am trying to bring these things closer to them by explaining basic physics laws that govern these phenomena.
On the other hand, most of my students prefer physics on macro-scale over the micro-scale physics which includes different types of motion, with or without gravity, gravitational attraction between two objects in the Universe, motion under gravity etc.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE QUOTE, AND WHY?
“Nobody ever figures out what life is all about, and it doesn’t matter. Explore the world. Nearly everything is really interesting if you go into it deeply enough“, by Richard P. Feynman.
The most beautiful thing is that science can be fun and it is accessible to everyone. Anyone can become a scientist — of the amateur or professional variety. Remember, somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known…