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How can we protect a mountain town from falling rocks?
Force Olympics Unit | Lesson 5 of 6

How can we protect a mountain town from falling rocks?

Force Olympics Unit | Lesson 5 of 6
Lesson narration:
Scroll for prep
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Now`say`it’s`moving
fast.`What`do`you
think`will`happen
if`it`bumps`into`a
tree?

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How`could`you
change`which`way
the`boulder`was
rolling,`so`that`it
wouldn’t`hit`the
house?

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Extensions

Below are ideas for extending this topic beyond the activity and exploration you just completed.

  • Lesson Assessment
  • Readings: Great resources for learning about pushes, pulls, and changing directions
  • Videos: Have students dive into the tricky nature of controlled avalanches.
  • Activities: Explore more about pushing and pulling, or make your own avalanche!
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Readings

These online books are free for educators registered on Epic!:

Pushing and Pulling by Natalie Hyde helps us discover just exactly which force causes pushes and pulls. (Ages 6-8)

Changing Direction by Natalie Hyde explains why things change direction and how that helps us in everyday life. (Ages 6-8)

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Videos: Controlled Avalanches

Avalanches can be very dangerous, but sometimes it is necessary to create controlled avalanches to protect towns and people. Here are several videos demonstrating different ways people create avalanches:

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Extra Activities

  • Create an Avalanche: Instructions to make a simple and safe avalanche from the US Forest Service.

  • Force Experiments: Simple and fun projects from We Are Teachers, teaching all about pushes and pulls.

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Lesson narration:

Grade K

Pushes & Pulls

Direction of Motion & Engineering

K-PS2-2, K-2-ETS1-1, K-2-ETS1-2, K-2-ETS1-3

Activity Prep

Print Prep

In this lesson, students investigate how pushes can change the speed and direction of falling objects. In the activity, Boulder Bounce, students play a game where they design a solution that protects a model town called Tiny Town from a bouncing-ball “boulder.”

Preview activity
COVID-19 Adaptations
Teacher demo recommended

Students at home
Set up one Game Station to demonstrate the activity over video conference. Have students make the decisions about where the pushpins should go to protect the town.
Students at school
Set up one Game Station to demonstrate the activity. Have students make the decisions about where the pushpins should go to protect the town.

Exploration

17 mins

Wrap-Up

3 mins

Grade K

Pushes & Pulls

Direction of Motion & Engineering

K-PS2-2, K-2-ETS1-1, K-2-ETS1-2, K-2-ETS1-3

Slow internet or video problems?