Gravity and Friction (Air Resistance) Lab

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.

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  • Gravity-and-Friction-Lab.doc

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Created: Dec 2, 2018

Updated: Dec 29, 2018


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