Your students will learn about Isaac Newton’s Third Law, that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
Your students will observe and record results from a scientific experiment, using scientific terms.
Your students will learn how to extrapolate from these simple experiments to consider the principles and benefits of hydro energy.
On two plates, mark the centre point and six equal segments around the edge.
Staple the plastic cups to each segment, and then join the plates through the centre using a skewer.
Holding the skewer, pour water into a cup at the top of the water wheel and observe the effects.
Discuss what happens when water is poured in slowly, then fast. Ask students to identify the energy transfers at work.
Punch a hole in the top of the milk carton, and thread a long piece of string through it.
Punch a small hole in the bottom right-hand corner of each side of the carton, and cover these holes with masking tape.
Hang the carton somewhere it can swing freely (remember, you should be able to collect the water or let it fall on a garden).
Before you fill the carton with water and remove pieces of tape one by one, ask students to predict the results.
Extension: If gravity was removed?
What happens when you try to pour liquid if gravity is removed? This video shows NASA astronauts popping water balloons in space – where there is zero gravity – with eye-popping results.
Up in space, liquid doesn’t fall to the ground. The force or pull of gravity is the missing element.
The experiments above clearly wouldn’t work in space. What types of renewable energy could be harnessed in space?
Discuss the importance of Newton’s Third Law in many of the ways that we convert energy into usable forms.