If you've always wondered why gravity exists or are fascinated by the discoveries of Einstein, but don't have the time and money required to take a physics class, you can teach yourself the fundamentals of physics at home. It is easy to learn physics with the help of free online lectures, informative podcasts and textbooks. After you've learned the basics, apply what you've learned by performing your own physics experiments at home using everyday household objects.
Visit the "Open Yale Courses" website and watch introductory physics lectures for free. Click on "Downloads" on the left side of the website to download video and mp3 files of physics lectures that cover topics such as Newton's laws of motion, torque and thermodynamics.
Listen to free physics podcasts on the Learn Out Loud website. To learn more about such basic physics topics as magnetism, optics and electricity, download the podcast called "Introductory Physics." Learn Out Loud also has podcasts covering such advanced physics topics as quarks, quantum mechanics, relativity and the theories of Einstein. Once you have found a podcast you are interested in, click the link to download the recording to your mp3 player or listen to the streaming audio version on your computer.
Download a free physics textbook at the "Motion Mountain" website. The electronic textbook contains the latest research on physics topics such as mechanics, relativity, thermodynamics and quantum theory. Although many of the topics are quite advanced, the textbook is written in language that is easy to understand. When you download the textbook's PDF files, you will also have access to hundreds of films, illustrations and animations that explain physics concepts.
Conduct physics experiments at home. Purchase the book "Physics Demonstrations: A Sourcebook for Teachers of Physics" by Julien Sprott. Choose from 85 experiments that demonstrate the basic concepts of physics. Although the book is designed for physics teachers, many of the experiments can be conducted at home using such everyday items as rubber bands. The book also comes with a DVD that shows the author conducting the experiments.
Tips & Warnings
- Do not allow children to perform physics experiments without supervision.