Practical Science: Friction.
To continue our exploration of forces and magnets, children were introduced to a new force called friction. Friction is a force that holds back the movement of an object. Friction acts in the opposite direction to the movment of an object, slowing that object down and eventually causing it to stop. To discover more about this important force, children planned and carried out a practical investigation to test the effects of friction exerted on a toy car by different surfaces.
Using homemade ramps, toy cars and metre rulers, children ventured into the playground to set up their investigation. We discussed the possible variables and planned our investigation carefully to ensure that the only variable we would change was the surface the car would travel on. We tested four different surfaces: playground tarmac, grass, rubber matting and fabric. Children worked together to carry out their investigation; rolling their toy car down a ramp and measuring the distance travelled across each surface. Children recorded their results in a table and, using their understanding of friction, explained their findings.