Cool Labs

Density Rods
Density Rods

The Density Rod Set consists of two rods. The aluminum rod sinks in warm water and floats in cool. This is because cool water is more dense than warm, and the aluminum rod is made to be between those two...

Quantum Lab
Quantum Lab

Something that is quantized exists in multiples of a set quantity. Examples are charge [1.6 x 10-19C] or quantum energies of photons. Planck and Einstein predicted that light existed as discrete bundles called photons. Since they could not see a...

Picture of a Lab: Different Graph Types
Picture of a Lab: Different Graph Types

Picture of a Lab – Different Graph Types Station #1 investigates the relationship between force and displacement of a stretched spring. Students will discover a direct linear relationship, with an equation of the form y = mx + b. Station...

Lab #9.7 Mechanics: Chapter 9  Dropping The Ball
Lab #9.7 Mechanics: Chapter 9 Dropping The Ball

Purpose In this experiment, you will lift a ball and drop it. You will determine and compare the potential energy of the ball before it's dropped to the kinetic energy of the ball after right before it hits the ground....

Lab #9.1 Mechanics: Chapter 9  An Uphill Climb
Lab #9.1 Mechanics: Chapter 9 An Uphill Climb

PurposeIn this experiment, you will determine what advantage—if any—there is in using an inclined plane to move an object to a higher elevation. DiscussionWhy are ramps used when lifting heavy objects? Does it make the task easier (requires less force)?...

Density of a Solid
Density of a Solid

Regular and irregular objects will be used. Students will devise a way of finding the volume of each object – calculating the volume of a cube or using water displacement for irregular objects. They will calculate the density of each...

Lab #8.2 Mechanics: Chapter 8  Egg Toss
Lab #8.2 Mechanics: Chapter 8 Egg Toss

Purpose In this activity, you will investigate the effect that stopping time has on stopping force when momentum changes. Discussion Allowing an object to keep moving as it is being caught extends the stopping time which in turns reduces the...

Acceleration Force and Mass
Acceleration Force and Mass

Students love fast moving experiments, but higher speeds often require higher technology. That can challenge the budget and students’ ability to use the technology. These simple, but highly accurate photogates remove both barriers. No costly computers are needed, and set...

Waves on a Helical Spring
Waves on a Helical Spring

Students investigate properties of mechanical waves using a helical spring: wavelength, speed, reflection, standing waves, interference. Neither amplitude nor frequency affects wave speed. As wave frequency goes up, wavelength goes down, and vice versa. Wave pulses can interfere constructively (adding...

Tuning Fork Interference
Tuning Fork Interference

Tuning Fork InterferenceTwo waves, when traveling through the same medium, will superimpose upon one another, causing interference. In the case of sound, the two sounds will combine to form a single sound. This lab asks students to combine the sounds...

Slinky waves
Slinky waves

Students investigate properties of mechanical waves using a "slinky" spring: wavelength, speed, reflection, standing waves, interference. Good for grade levels 5 through 8 Download Teacher Notes and Student Worksheets Required Equipment Acknowledgements: Thank you to Dwight "Buzz" Putnam for his...

Refraction and Total Internal Reflection
Refraction and Total Internal Reflection

Students will be able to observe that refraction (bending) always takes place at the interface between two different transparent materials and that the angle of refraction in plastic is smaller than the angle of incidence in air. The light is...