Well, it isn’t May yet, but the force is strong with these students. The content of this topic scaffolds upon grade level. Our first graders began exploring how gravity and slope change the rate of speed an object travels. They began building ping pong ball mazes from cardboard, making modifications to their slope for how fast or slow they wanted their ball to travel as well as alternating direction. Week 2 was spent investigating magnetic properties of pushes and pulls. They rescued paperclips from drowning in a cup of water, worked on their “magic” magnetism by levitating items, and testing magnetic strength via stacking materials between a magnet and magnetic object. Then in week three, third graders focused on balance in motion. This week was dedicated to exploring how to balance a variety of objects and what balance means. From their they created cars out of index cards, straws, tape, and life savers in which the goal was to have a vehicle that would steer straight by looking at symmetry of vehicle design of the chassis, wheel axles, and placement of tires.
Third grade is currently using Hot Wheels to build tracks to test variables of speed, distance traveled, vehicle design, and engineering a safety harness to protect LEGO figures. Their week two will consist of building parachutes to slow the rate of fall for ping pong golf, rubber, and Styrofoam balls.
Fifth grade engineered Slinky spring scales to calibrate the weight of objects and test their results verses the digital scale read-out. Then the used genuine spring scales to test surfaces areas and the amount of friction produced by pulling wooden blocks across linoleum, carpet, sandpaper, wax paper, foil, and rubber mats. The third installment to their force unit was calculating the speed of vehicles. For this activity fifth graders used pull back ATV’s, adding weight after each series of three trials. Then they compared the results and created graphs to represent the speed and distance.
Hopefully we’ll be back before the school year lets out for another episode of Vantaztic Learning. May the 4th be with you.
1.P.1 Understand how forces (pushes or pulls) affect the motion of an object.
1.P.1.1 Explain the importance of a push or pull to changing the motion of an object.
1.P.1.2 Explain how some forces (pushes and pulls) can be used to make things move without touching them, such as magnets.
1.P.1.3 Predict the effect of a given force on the motion of an object, including balanced forces.
3.P.1 Understand motion and factors that affect motion.
3.P.1.1 Infer changes in speed or direction resulting from forces acting on an object.
3.P.1.2 Compare the relative speeds (faster or slower) of objects that travel the same distance in different amounts of time.
3.P.1.3 Explain the effect of earth’s gravity on the motion of any object on or near the earth.
5.P.1 Understand force, motion and the relationship between them.
5.P.1.1 Explain how factors such as gravity, friction, and change in mass affect the motion of objects.
5.P.1.2 Infer the motion of objects in terms of how far they travel in a certain amount of time and the direction in which they travel.
5.P.1.3 Illustrate the motion of an object using a graph to show a change in position over a period of time.
5.P.1.4 Predict the effect of a given force or a change in mass on the motion of an object.