Use this engaging friction experiment when teaching your students about sliding friction and the effect it has on the movement of objects.
A Friction Experiment Perfect for Kids
Friction is a force. When an object slides against another object in a particular direction, friction acts upon the object to slow or stop it from sliding. Different materials can affect the strength of the friction force.
It is one thing to learn about the force of friction by reading about it or hearing about it, but the best way to learn about the effect that friction can have on moving objects is by seeing it in action! That’s why the experienced teacher team at Teach Starter has designed this friction experiment that perfectly aligns with your forces and motion science unit! All you need is a journal and three classroom objects made from different materials, and your students can start observing the force of friction at work before their very eyes!
The procedure for this friction experiment is outlined below:
- Lie the journal flat on a desk. Place the three classroom objects of different materials along the long edge of the journal.
- Slowly raise the long edge of the journal with the three objects, taking note of any movements.
- As each of the objects begins to slide down the journal, record it in the results table.
- Repeat the test twice more and record the data.
The resource download provides a complete booklet with all the instructions and worksheets the students require to conduct this friction experiment. The booklet downloads as a PDF; however, should you wish your students to complete the worksheets electronically, a Google Slides version of these is also available. (Note: The cover page is not included in the editable download.)
This friction experiment for kids provides a hands-on approach to learning about the fascinating force of friction. By actively engaging in this experiment, your students will gain a deeper understanding of how different materials influence the strength of friction force.
Develop Scientific Literacy with This Friction Experiment
Science education is about way more than an understanding of concepts. It is also about the development of key skills such as asking questions, making predictions, recording measurements and drawing conclusions.
This friction experiment allows your students to apply many of these key science inquiry skills while learning about the force of friction and its effects on objects. These skills include:
- Making a prediction
- Identifying the constants and the variable
- Listing equipment
- Identifying a method for recording data
- Drawing a labelled diagram of the experiment setup
- Measuring and recording results
- Making comparisons of data
- Drawing evidence-based conclusions
There are so many advantages to using practical experiments in your science classroom, so get ready to inspire the budding scientists in your class with this fun and educational experiment!
Download This Friction Experiment for Kids
As mentioned above, this friction experiment downloads as either an easy-print PDF or an editable Google Slides version. Use the download button to access your preferred file format. (Note: You will be prompted to make a copy of the Google Slides template on your personal drive before accessing it.)
To save paper, you might like to project the instruction page on your interactive whiteboard and provide the student with the worksheet pages only. Please consider printing these double-sided – the environment will thank you for it!
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