April 14, 2024
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April 14, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

TABC Juniors Learn The Physics of Music

TABC Stem Coordinator Aryeh Tiefenbrunn gave a special presentation in Rabbi Shaya First’s honors physics class last Thursday about the physics of music. The physics students learned about sound waves and harmonics a couple of weeks ago, so Tiefenbrunn took the opportunity to explore how these concepts are applied, practically, in the context of music and everyday sounds. Using the gigantic, low-pitched strings of an upright bass as a visual aid, students were able to physically see the shapes of sine waves as the strings vibrated, and hear the sounds of the harmonic series by isolating progressively higher frequencies from the strings. Students came away from the presentation with an understanding of how complex and rich every sound we hear is, why different musical instruments can sound different even when playing the same notes, and why each and every person has their own unique voice—the answers all lie in the harmonic series. The honors physics students enjoyed this unique opportunity for interdisciplinary learning!

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