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University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Transportation Systems Engineering

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Lesson Overview
Lesson Title:
Newton's Boats

Teachers:
Mr. Scott Tingelhoff (Primary)

Brief Description:
Students will investigate Newton's 3 Laws through inquiry.

Topics Introduced:
Newton's 3 Laws

Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics Curriculum Framework Components Addressed:
Transportation Operations
Suggested Grade Levels:
8th Grade

Subjects:
Science
Standards Taught:
8.2.2 Science 2010

Lesson Information
Learning Expectations:

At the conclusion students will be able to demonstrate/explain Newton’s 3 Laws.

Plan Of Action:

1. Bellwork, students completed an Introduction question relating to their prior knowledge of last class.

2. Student Demo's (Three)
1. Penny/Card/Cup: Students be given these supplies and told to explore with them. After a couple minutes teacher will instruct students to put the penny on top of the card which sits on top of the cup. Students will have the instruction of trying to drop the penny into the cup without touching the penny or lifting the card. Once the students are able to accomplish this, the teacher will lead a discussion about what happened and how did it work. This will lead to Newton’s 1st Law.
2. Students pushing each other in chairs. In groups of 3 students will take turns pushing each other in the chairs that move. Have one student push two students separately with the same amount of force. Once they do this have the student notice the difference in movement. Now push the same person twice, once a normal push and next a greater push. Once they do this have the students notice the movement. Once they complete this have a group discussion about Newton’s 2nd Law, F=MxA.
3. Playing with balloons and pushing each other in chairs (again). Have the students work with their elbow partner and give them a balloon to experiment with. If they haven’t blown the balloon up and let it fly help them by encouraging them to do this. Then have the one of the students push the other while sitting in his/her chair. Once they complete these two task have a discussion about Newton’s 3rd Law.

3. Newton's Pictures, On the white/chalk board the teacher should have written down the concepts of Newton’s 3 Laws during the discussion with the students. Having the students work with their elbow partner, pass out a picture showing one of Newton’s 3 Laws. The students, working in pairs, must decide which one of Newton’s Laws is depicted in the picture. We will share this as a large group. This will give the teacher an idea of how the class is doing with the concept. During the discussion key vocabulary terms could be discussed.

4. Boat race, students will choose from a list of materials that they can use to build a milk carton boat. They will race on two side by side tracks that will also be wind aided. Students will ahve a set amount of time to build and how many materials they have to choose from to build their boat.

5. Cool Down, At the end, each student will write down and explain one of Newton’s Laws from the Boat Race activity. The teacher will number off each student 1-3 and that will be the law each student is responsible for explaining. This will be written down on a note card and be collected as an exit ticket (formative) which the teacher can review and gauge where the students’ level of understanding is at.

Data Set Used:

On the white/chalk board the teacher should have written down the concepts of Newton’s 3 Laws during the discussion with the students. Having the students work with their elbow partner, pass out a picture showing one of Newton’s 3 Laws. The students, working in pairs, must decide which one of Newton’s Laws is depicted in the picture. We will share this as a large group. This will give the teacher an idea of how the class is doing with the concept. During the discussion key vocabulary terms could be discussed.

Materials Needed:

Pennies, milk cartons, clay, drinking straws, balloons, rubberbands, note cards, plastic cups, masking tape, paperclps, fan, student chairs with wheels, and pvc pipe racing track.

Preparation Period:

Setting up for this activity takes about an hour to gather all materials and arrange the classroom so this activity can be successful.

Implementation Period:

This activity took me about a block to a block and a half depending on the group of students. A block period was 83 minutes.

Science, Math, Engineering and / or Technology Implications:

Students will discover the concept of Newtons 3 Laws.

Unexpected Results:

You don't want the groups to test their boats on the water too much before hand because the water could make their boat unstable causing it not to work properly during the race.

Considerations for Diversity in Education:

When talking about Isaac Newton you can provide an extension activity that goes in depth on diversity of famous Scientist.


Lesson Files
Newtons Boat Lesson Plan
This is the lesson plan on a word document for the Newtons Boat activity.
[size: 28160] [date uploaded: Apr 09, 2012, 2:13 pm ]

Newtons Boat PowerPoint
This is the PowerPoint presentation that goes with the Newtons Boat activity.
[size: 212480] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 8:45 am ]

Newton 1st Law Picture
This picture is an example of Newton's First Law.
[size: 5589] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:02 am ]

Newton's First Law Picture #2
This picture is an example of Newton's First Law.
[size: 4091] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:07 am ]

Newton's First Law Picture #3
This picture is an example of Newton's First Law.
[size: 135876] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:12 am ]

Newton's 2nd Law Picture
This picture is an example of Newton's Second Law.
[size: 7957] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:19 am ]

Newton's Second Law Picture #2
This picture is an example of Newton's Second Law.
[size: 8535] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:20 am ]

Newton's Second Law Picture #3
This picture is an example of Newton's Second Law.
[size: 27496] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:20 am ]

Newton's Third Law Picture
This picture is an example of Newton's Third Law.
[size: 2434] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:21 am ]

Newton's Third Law Picture #2
This picture is an example of Newton's Third Law.
[size: 1956] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:21 am ]

Newton's Third Law Picture #3
This picture is an example of Newton's Third Law.
[size: 30294] [date uploaded: Apr 11, 2012, 11:22 am ]

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