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Amusement Park Physics

This site explores the laws of physics and how they play a role in the design of amusement park rides. You can design a roller coaster, determine the outcome of bumper car collisions, and more.

Published by Annenbert Learner in 2011

• Click here for this Web Site
Curriculum Information For Resource

Snapshot
Grade Level(s):4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Curriculum Areas:Science
Mathematics
Themes/Keywords: Force
Motion
Physics
Roller coasters


Vocabulary
acceleration, centripetal force, energy, kinetic/potential energy, friction, g, gravitational force, inertia, mass, momentum, velocity, weight/weightlessness


Essential Question(s)
1. How does a roller coaster work?
2. What's the difference between a wooden roaster coaster and a metal roller coaster?

Discussion Question(s)
1. What is the most important part of a roller coaster?
2. How does the human body adjust to the motion of the roller coaster?

Extension and Activities
1. Ask students to reflect on their favorite roller coaster and why they like it. Research the kind of roller coaster it is and how it works? Is it a loop coaster or a up-and-down coaster? How are they different? What laws of physics are in play for the roller coaster to work? Now design one using the tool found on the site.


"I am a teacher at 107th elementary school in LAUSD, an inner-city school. Everything good that is given to us - is then taken away. The CADRE has brought art, music, dance, drama and light to a very difficult academic community. The Cadre is the only wonderful experience happening at 107th street school - this program needs to be continually funded. As well as encouraging students to find new areas of expertise, the teachers participate and learn about programs new to them as well. The Kathryn Dunham Dance Company was totally inspiring and intriguing as I got a taste of the dance the students would learn. The Marchall Dance Company was the only HOLIDAY PROGRAM my 1st graders received this year - and it was a dandy! Just Great! Samuel, a 1st grader in my class, was called to join in the welcoming dance and my whole class was proud of him and he was elated. Please, continue the funding for the CADRE. Thank you. Rosemary Pluskat"

Rosemary Pluskat
We need you!
LAUSD - Los Angeles, California






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