Newton's Laws

This time we will investigate Newton's laws of motion. While Galileo laid the foundations for them, Newton was the one that put them into the form that we know them today.

A Bouncing Water Balloon

Have you ever played with water balloons? If so, you probably dropped one at some time, and got wet when it burst. What if it had bounced instead? Water balloons can be made to bounce very easily, if you know the science.

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If I roll the ball around the paper plate in the direction of the blue arrow, when it gets to the place where I cut out part of the plate, which path will it take? A, B or C? Why?

Stirring Sand, part 2

In part one, I left you with a challenge. We put a little sand into a glass of water and stirred it. Instead of moving to the outside edge, as we might expect, the sand gathered in the center of the glass. I left you with the challenge of telling me why.

Congratulations! Several of you got the right answer, and several more got it at least partially right.

Measuring Kinetic and Potential Energy

I developed this activity while producing some science videos to go with a science textbook. They wanted students to be able to measure potential and kinetic energy, using everyday objects. Thanks to the abundance of cell phones, this is an easy way to do that.