Welcome to the John Childs Home Page

The Flame Tube

I'ts been a joy being a physics and computer science teacher for 35 years! During that time my students and I have had a lot of fun. My most favourite demo has always been this flame tube. You can't buy this demo apparatus, so you've got to build it yourself. It's a simple afternoon project, and it gives wonderful results, as you can see. In the near future I'll post detailied instructions on how to build it. If you can't wait, send me an email! Below are some interesting subjects that I'm sure you'll enjoy browsing.

Chaos, Fractals and the Mandelbrot Set

Explore this fascinating topic that is revolutionizing our understanding of the natural world!
Send for your InfoPak to get you started on this incredible journey!

Physics is Phun!

The physical world we live in is an unbelievable, mind boggling, analogue living computing machine. When we get to heaven, God will show us the source code! Nothing is more exciting than learning and physics opens a magic window that allows us to understand some of this world. Here is a pot-pouri of fun and physics, ideas, and some resources that I would like to send you.

Vampire Numbers!

One day while reading Discover magazine, I came across Clifford Pickover's brain boggler question. He has created a unique mathematical puzzle whose solution requires some fun computer programming.
Can you beat my current world record?

Trans-Canada Cycling Adventure!

One of the highlights of my travelling life was the cycling trip our school organized that had a team of 14 boys and girls cross Canada by bicycle. 8,000 kms in 30 days!! Read the story, meet the people, see the country.

I Touch the Future... I TEACH!

As a teacher of physics and computer science, I was privileged to be a member of the faculty at G.C.C. for 35 years, from 1972 to 2007. It was a wonderful experience, and I loved every minute of it. Unfortunately, the school was not able to open for the 2008 school year due to the financial pressures of declining enrollment.

Build a Star-Tracker and catch a COMET!

You don't need expensive telescope equipment to take a fantastic photograph of these magnificent heavenly travellers! You can really do it with a home made barn-door star tracker. I built this to photograph Hale-Bopp back in '97. Give it a try... you'll be amazed, and you'll be ready for the next comet!

The LED Bar

Here is an interesting device that you can build for your computer. It is fun to program, and opens the door to learning how to start interfacing your PC to the outside world. Great for teachers of computer science. You can order it as a kit, ready to assemble!


My physics students had a wonderful time building models of the Lunar Prospector spacecraft, and simulating the launch and control of the flight to the moon and real-time data acquisition. It was awesome! Here's the story.

Adirondak 46rs

The Adirondak 46rs is a hiking and climbing club that is informally organized and consists of those people that have climbed to the summits of the 46 mountains in the Adirondacks that are over 4,000' elevation. Originally about half of these mountains where trailless, and required map and compass work, and the ability to get very well lost from time to time. Take a hike, and see that...
"In wilderness is the preservation of the world." Henry David Thoreau.

Wooden Puzzles

Wooden puzzles are wonderful companions. They are like little creatures, each with its own personality, history and temperment. They can be quiet and docile, cooperating with your fingers as you guide them apart and together. Or, they can be raving maniacs, driving you to the edge of insanity and hopelessness. I invite you to meet my pets. If you are familiar with this type of puzzle, drop me a line!

Let's Go Diving!

A few years ago, I had the chance to get certified as a scuba diver. Wow, what a fantastic world it is under water! I loved it. My wife got certified the next year and now diving is one of our favourite activites. We've been diving in the Carribbean at the U.S. Virgin Islands, Bonaire, Cozumel, and the Florida Keys, as well as lots of wreck dives near Tobermory, ON, (brrrr) and in the St. Lawrence River. I've reached the level of PADI Divemaster, and have posted some interesting photo-journals of dives in Cozumel, Mexico, on the Rodales Scuba Diving website. "Click the link and Let's Get Wet...!"

Let's talk :-)   (johnchilds@ripnet.com)
or send me real mail at:

John Childs
378 Cedar Sands Roadway
Lyndhurst, ON K0E 1N0

Have a nice day!