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Well, Blow Me Over!

 
We have observed that forces can move things. In this experiment, you will see that the same force can affect objects differently.
 
Think about a picnic. If a breeze comes up, it may blow the napkins away and tip paper plates, but not affect the sandwiches or drinks. The force of the breeze was enough to move the paper stuff, but not enough to move heavier objects.
 

Materials:

  • Fan (with 3 speeds)
  • Sock
  • Piece of paper
  • Newspaper
  • Book
  • Blanket
  • Beach ball
  • Towel or washcloth
  • Ruler or yardstick
 
Safety: Make sure you are careful not to hurt anyone.
 

Procedure:

  1. Choose any one of the objects.
  2. Set the object one foot away from the fan.
  3. Turn on the fan. Keep it at the same speed for each part of the experiment.
    • What did you observe?
    • If the object moved, measure and write down how far it went.
  4. Record your data in a table like the one below.
  5. Repeat the experiment with a different object.
    • Which objects moved the farthest?
    • Why did they move so far?
 
object low med. high
blanket      
newspaper      
beach ball      
sock      
wash cloth      
book      
 
We have seen that a force of the same strength affects various objects differently, depending on their weight. In the next experiment we will look at forces of different strengths.
 
 
EarthMoonImage
LivingOrNotLivingImage
ForceMotionImage
GravityImage
HeatAndEnergyImage

Download the plug-ins: Get Adobe Acrobat Reader, and Get Quicktime Player. (The QuickTime plug-in is needed to play sounds and movies correctly.)

Want to share photos of you or your friends doing this activity? Send it in an e-mail with the following information:

  1. The title of the activity
  2. The URL (Internet address)
  3. Your name.

Remember that no pictures can be used that show student faces or student names on it. 

Teachers should view the Teacher Site Map to relate Sci-ber text and the USOE 3rd grade science core.


Updated October 24, 2008 by: Glen Westbroek

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