Olympics Science

Hi –

This week in Science, in honor of the Winter Olympics, we learned about balance.

First, we talked a little about the Olympics and some of the sports that we had seen on TV. Many of us had seen skiing, snow-boarding, and/or ice skating – either the dancing type or the racing type. Of those who watched the games, almost all had seen at least one person fall down.

Next, we decided if different block towers were balanced (not going to fall over)

or unbalanced (going to fall over).

Then we tried balancing ourselves on one foot in many different ways:

Once we got a feel for what balance is and is not, we each got a photograph of a person (or a group of people). We had to decide if the person was balanced or was unbalanced. We sorted the photographs into two groups:

Could a pencil be balanced on its point on the end of a ruler?

Not easily – but it could be done if it has a counterweight attached:

or two:

Could the first pencil be balanced on top of the second one?

That was pretty crazy!

Finally, we tried to figure out how to balance paper clowns upside-down on our fingertips. That wasn’t easy.

Hint: The clown is shaped like the pencil-balancer, but the pencil balancer has counterweights. How can we add counterweights to the clown?

Everyone got two paperclips. It took us a while, but we kept trying. Finally, we did it!

It was a very well-balanced class!

See you next week –

Morah Elaine

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