Forces and Motion
Potential energy builds in rollercoaster cars as they move up, and is transferred to kinetic energy as they race down.
© Tom Stazer
Mass, acceleration, change, momentum, Newton's laws, push, pull, friction, kinetic, potential
3...2...1...Puff! (rocket stability)Lesson
Students learn about rocket stability by constructing and flying small paper rockets.
Students construct a model arm and learn how muscles and bones work together to achieve efficient movement.
Students devise a plan to measure the distance of a balloon’s flight, predict the direction a balloon will travel as it deflates, and learn about Newton's Laws of Motion.
Center of GravityLesson
Students learn about center of gravity and how the body adjusts to the force of gravity to remain balanced.
Heavy Lifting (launching with payloads)Lesson
Students design and build balloon-powered rockets with which to launch a payload to the classroom ceiling.
Hero Engine (third law of motion)Lesson
Students use the thrust produced by falling water to investigate Newton’s Third Law of Motion.
Launch Altitude TrackerLesson
Students construct a launch altitude tracker and use it, along with basic mathematics, to indirectly measure the altitude achieved by their rockets.
Newton Car (second law of motion)Lesson
Students investigate the relationship among mass, acceleration and force, as described in Newton's Second Law of Motion.
Paper Rockets - AdvancedLesson
Students design and construct advanced, high-powered paper rockets for specific flight missions.
Paper Rockets - BasicLesson
Students design and construct simple, three-sided rockets.
Paper Rockets - IntermediateLesson
Students construct paper rockets, fly them using the launchers built earlier, evaluate their rockets' flight, and modify their designs to improve flight performance.
Rocket Cars: Rocket RacesLesson
Students learn about Newton’s Three Laws of Motion as they construct and test a lightweight “rocket” car propelled by the action/reaction force of air escaping from an inflated balloon.
Rocket Launcher (for all paper rockets)Lesson
Students create an air pressure launcher for use with their paper rockets.
Water Rocket Launcher (teacher only)Article
Instructions for building and operating a platform from which to launch water rockets used in student experiments.
Student teams construct water rockets from empty two-liter soft drink bottles, and qualify their rockets for flight by conducting string tests.
Wind Tunnel (performance tester)Lesson
Students construct a wind tunnel to test the performance of their paper rockets, and use data generated from the test to help them design better rockets.
Students apply rocket science principles to design, construct, test, and launch rockets using a real-world problem-solving simulation.