In this activity, students explore how gravity and friction (air resistance) affect the speed of a following object.
Students will work in groups of 2-3. The activity takes one class period (~45 minutes), including intro, lab, post-discussion.
The materials needed are: one sheet of paper per group (cut into two halves), a heavy book that’s larger than the 1/2 sheet of paper, and a chair to stand on.
My students enjoy this activity, as it’s a bit counter-intuitive.
The lab is in Word format, so feel free to adjust/adapt it to fit your needs, and the needs of your students.
There is also a companion video for the lab available, should you want to see how it’s done, or provide it as a way for students to make up a missed lab.