Wow it works | Center of Gravity

center of gravity

In this wow it works activity , kids learn about center of gravity or mass on an incline plane . What happens to a ball on an incline plane ? It rolls down of course . But why? Here we get kids to build the gravity robot that literally “walk” down the slope . To be able to move , we first need to shift the center of gravity . But that would cause some imbalance , and that is precisely what happen to the gravity robot

Center of gravity | Theory and basic activities

center of gravity center of gravity

center of gravityIn the center of gravity basic theory , kids learn what is the center of gravity and where it is normally located for a regular shaped object . Sometimes the center of gravity may not lie on the object itself , such as the dough nut for example . Kids also learn about  how to determine the center of gravity  of a stick using 2 fingers and what happens to the center of gravity when additional weights were added to the stick .

In the “super glue” chair and hand-to-toe activities , kids learn that they cannot move if the can’t shift their center of gravity . With their back against the chair and feet flatly grounded to the floor , they just cannot stand up no matter how hard they try . Try with a strapped on back-pack , and kids should be able to standup with ease .

In the hand-to-toe activities , with their hands blocking the feet , kids cannot jump forward to shift their center of gravity . They can jump backwards though .

There are a lot of simple activities to help kids understand how center of gravity affects our movement . Its just that we do so automatically !!

Center of gravity | The gravity robot

What happen when we stand a flat plane and then having someone to slowly raise the plane ? Very soon , we will need to put our foot forward , else we will lose our balance . How about building a robot to do this ?

gravity robotgravity robot

gravity robotgravity robot

In the “wow it works” program , kids get to build the gravity robot with a set of pre-prepared templates and material . Then kids will test them (how well the gravity robot “walk” down the incline plane) to see what problems might surface and why . What can be done to fix it or improve it further .

It is important that kids test and see their very own self made project . Here is a photo of kids testing the robot out herself . In the end all robots will “walk” down the incline plane . See their HAPPY faces !!

gravity robotgravity robot

 Center of Gravity | Wow it works program

The wow it works program teaches basic maths and science knowledge to kids . Acquiring the knowledge is just the first part . Applying it is the second part and we do this by building a model which is a gravity robot , which is the goal of this particular project . It is very natural that kids face challenges in this phase and it is important that they experience this so that they use their knowledge and thinking process to see what possibly could have gone wrong . They will explore solutions and alternatives to resolve them .  The “showing” of a physical working model is the third part  . This help not only reinforces what they have learnt but also build their self confidence in what they are capable of doing . Wow it works program for center of gravity !!

 

gravity robotgravity robot

gravity robotgravity robot

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