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Middle School

Linear Motion: Position, Velocity, and Acceleration

Submitted by PocketLab on Thu, 06/01/2017 - 18:30


What is velocity? Velocity is often defined as speed with direction and speed is often defined as how fast or slow an object is traveling. But what exactly does being fast or slow mean? How can we represent an object’s velocity with an equation, graph, or other model? What is acceleration?

Grade Level

Newton's Laws of Motion with PocketLab and Estes Air Rocket

Submitted by PocketLab on Thu, 06/01/2017 - 18:19

Exploration Part 1

Previously you learned that the net force acting on an object is related to the object’s motion. The net force determines whether the velocity of an object will change. This is described in Newton’s First Law of Motion:

“An object at rest will remain at rest or an object in motion will remain in uniform motion unless acted upon by an outside force”.

Grade Level

Crash Cushion Investigation

Submitted by PocketLab on Thu, 06/01/2017 - 18:01


Nearly 1.3 million people die from car accidents worldwide each year, according to the World Health Organization. In order to reduce traffic fatalities high-speed roadways must be made safer. Building crash cushions along highways that reduce the impact force experienced by the passengers of the car in a crash can save lives. But how should these cushions be built?

Middle School Science Balloon Powered Car

Submitted by DaveBakker on Mon, 05/29/2017 - 17:01

Phenomena or Driving Question: Make a vehicle that travels one meter powered only by two balloons

Lesson description:  In this unit of study, Newton’s Laws will be used to explain the forces and motions of objects on Earth and in Space.  This Lesson is the Engineering design project at the end of the unit.

PE’s addressed: MS-PS2-1, MS-PS-2-2, MS-ETS1-1, MS-ETS1-4

This lesson is courtesy of Heather Wygant and Susan Paulsen, Santa Clara, CA

You can find an overview of the lesson here:

Grade Level