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  • Free Fall
Making Moon Craters
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As a weighted plastic egg is dropped into a tub of flour, ...

As a weighted plastic egg is dropped into a tub of flour, students see the effect that different heights and masses of the same object have on the overall energy of that object while observing a classic example of potential (stored) energy transferred to kinetic energy (motion). The plastic egg's mass is altered by adding pennies inside it. Because the egg's shape remains constant, and only the mass and height are varied, students can directly visualize how these factors influence the amounts of energy that the eggs carry for each experiment, verified by measurement of the resulting impact craters. Students learn the equations for kinetic and potential energy and then make predictions about the depths of the resulting craters for drops of different masses and heights. They collect and graph their data, comparing it to their predictions, and verifying the relationships described by the equations. This classroom demonstration is also suitable as a small group activity.

Material Type:
Activities and Labs
Instructional Material
Provider Set:
TeachEngineering NGSS Aligned Resources
Eric Anderson, Jeff Kessler, Irene Zhao
RESOURCE GK-12 Program,