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Up in the Air!

During our remote learning, Year 5 started to learn about different forces, including gravity. This week we conducted an experiment to see gravity in action and to see the effect air resistance can have on things that are falling.

First, we dropped different materials of different shapes and sizes to see how they dropped and importantly, how quickly they fell to the ground. We observed that a scrunched up piece of paper fell to the ground more quickly than a flat piece of paper. We then made spinners out of paper and dropped then to see that with the effect of air resistance, they fell more slowly.

In groups, the children chose one variable to change, for example the material of the paper or the size of the spinner, to see how different spinners would fall at different speeds. We timed their falls and saw that as expected, different spinners fell at different speeds.

One of the trends we saw was that the bigger spinners took longer to fall. We concluded that this was due to a greater amount of air pressure being put on the spinner which held it up in the air for longer.