ICPE Chair Reports on Activities and Trends on Physics Education

New ICPE Chair Members

Turning the Challenge into Opportunities

A Physics Education Project in Africa

A Physics Problem Based on an Actual Experiment

Physics in Stamps

Physics Posters

Teaching and Learning Physics in a Cultural Context

Anamorphic Images - A Combination of Art, Physics and Mathematics

Physics Education Conferences

Physics Education Publications

Physics Websites

Physics in Stamps

Qin Kecheng
Physics Department, Peking University

One of the topics emphasized in this conference is enhancing interest and relevance in physics teaching and learning. One way to arouse interest in teaching and learning physics is to take in to consideration the interest and hobbies of the students.

It was reported that there are 20 million stamp collectors in China, and 3.6 million are members of Philately Association. Most of them are young people and teenagers and students of schools of various levels. If interest in stamp collection can be combined with learning, we will gain much in physics teaching.

We can combine physics teaching and the interest in stamp collection because there is a lot of physics on stamps, they tell us the connection of physics with other aspects of social life and collecting them can foster good habits of learning.

Physics on Stamps

  • Stamps are excellent intuitive teaching material.
  • Encourage the students to find out the meaning of the picture of stamps, like the ones shown below:

  • Sometimes the content of the stamp are wrong. The mistakes also helps us to learn physics.
  • The colors of the rainbow
    in this stamp is inverted

    This stamp commemorates
    the 20th anniversary of Ampere, but
    on the right is a wattmeter, not an ammeter.


    There are rich data and material on the history of physics on stamps.

    This stamp records the tragedy of the Chernobyll Incident