This past month the girls of Sisters4Science at Ariel have been experimenting with some pretty neat areas of science. From ecology to chemistry to physics, the girls have done it all! A couple of weeks ago, the girls got to explore Newton’s Third Law of Motion by making balloon rockets. Since all of the girls had already learned about Newton’s Laws in their science classes, they were more than ready to put their knowledge into action – we even raced their balloon rockets to turn it into a competition!
To start things off, I asked the girls if anyone knew what Newton’s Laws of motion were. Logan informed us that they were basically rules that all objects followed when moving. So what exactly is Newton’s Third Law of Motion? “Well,” Amarah said, “that one says that for every action there is an equal an opposite reaction.” That’s exactly right! When we kick a ball, there is an equal and opposite force from the ball onto our foot. But because we couldn’t exactly kick balls around the classroom, we settled on testing this law with rockets! The girls divided up into groups to see who could create the fastest rocket balloon using nothing but a straw, a balloon, and some tape to attach them to each other. When they were finished, they secured their straws to a string that was hung across the room. Whoever’s balloon rocket made it to the other side of the room would be the winner -and the first race’s winner was… Kody’s group!
When I asked Kody why they thought their balloon rocket came in first, she said that their balloon was secured tightly to the straw but also didn’t block air from coming out of the balloon. Why is that important? Well, the air coming out of the balloon acts almost like an engine! The faster the air comes out of one end, the faster the balloon will jet across the string and to the other side of the room. Raven said they knew that would happen because of what she’d seen in cartoons. Who said TV couldn’t be educational! The girls all got a 2nd chance to recreate their balloon rockets, but this time with more secure attachments. The girls also realized that the more air in their balloon, the faster it would rush out! In the end, we had some very large balloons and some very fast rockets!