Part of Lesson Plan: It Really is Rocket Science Part 2
Activity Overview / Details
Get two of the same water bottles, but empty one of them. As students enter, ask them to examine the two bottles.
When students are seated, ask them what will happen if you drop the bottles (they will fall). Ask them what is the force that makes them fall (gravity).
Tell the students that you are going to drop the two bottles at the same time. Ask who thinks that the empty bottle will hit the ground first. If any one thinks that, ask them to explain why. Then have them re-think that answer. Next, ask who thinks the full bottle will hit first. Ask someone to explain why. Tell them they are Team Aristotle. Then, ask who thinks they will hit at the same time. Tell them they are Team Galileo and it is time for a contest.
You could just climb up on a desk and drop the bottles, but it is more exciting if you can find a second floor balcony to do the drop. If you do it right, Team Galileo will win.
See below for a link to a fun interactive Galileo game; you have to guess what happens when two balls are dropped out of a window.
Materials / Resource
- Galileo Game [ Go to Site ] http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/pisa/galileo.html