Monthly Archives - March 2017

Visit our Booth at MSTA and NSTA in March 2017

Are you attending the Michigan Science Teachers Association meeting or the NSTA National Conference in LA in a next few weeks? We will have booths and workshops at both.  Here are the details!


MSTA Annual Conference in at the Suburban Collection Showcase in Novi, Michigan  March 24-25,  2017  Booth # 407- 409
  • Cool Tools for Sound & Waves by Stephen Rea, Friday 9-10:45 am in the  Amethyst Room
  • Cool Tools for Electricity & Magnetism by Don Pata, Friday 1-2:45 pm in the Amethyst Room
  • Cool Tools for Force and Motion by Don Pata, Saturday 1-2:45 pm in the Amethyst Room
NSTA National Los Angeles, CA  March 30-April  2, 2017  Booth # 1548
  • Cool Tools for Light and Color by James Lincoln Thursday 4-5:30 pm in Room 408B
  • Cool Tools for Electricity and Magnetism 8-9:30 am in Room 408B
  • Cool Tools for Sound and Waves 10-11:30 am in Room 408B

Arbor Scientific’s Video Contest Winners Announced

For ten weeks starting in December 2016, physics educators and their students have been uploading their short videos that capture demonstrations of physics in the world- in Slow Motion. The contest was the first of its kind by Arbor Scientific, the educational leader in finding cool science tools for making understanding scientific principles easy, fun and exciting for today’s students.
Arbor Scientific asked Paul Hewitt, a renowned physics professor and author of the best selling textbook Conceptual Physics*, to review all the video entries and choose the winner. Hewitt said “It has been a pleasure watching these. I chose INERTIA BLOCKS, mainly because of the 4 sheets pulled at the same time; a nice lift to a familiar demo”. The second winner was based upon popular votes at the contest website, receiving over 380 fan votes!


Both winners will receive a $100 Arbor Scientific gift certificate which will help them purchase new classroom science products, a profile on Arbor Scientifics Blog “CoolStuff” and in the CoolStuff e-newsletter mailed to over 20,000 educators monthly.


Amador Valley High School Watch their entry video INERTIA BLOCKS

Amador Valley High School: Students stacked blocks with cardboard pieces attached to string in between. They were able to pull out the cardboard and see that the inertia of the blocks resisted changes in motion enough to stay where they were.

Manistee High School Watch their entry video CONSERVATION OF MOMENTUM


Conservation of Momentum by Manistee High School
Hypothesis: The higher density ball when colliding with a lower density ball will knock the lower density ball back no matter the size. Goal of

Experiment: This experiment was testing how collision is affected by the masses of the objects colliding at the same speed. This experiment also tests and confirms Newton’s Third Law of Motion: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.


  • Four Balls Were Used in This Video:
  • Two basketballs of an equal mass of 600.29g
  • One Volleyball with a mass of 274.19g
  • One Shot Put with a mass of 4200g

A ramp was placed on both sides of the track to launch the balls. The ramp was 7m tall, two people let the ball roll down the ramp at the same time, then observed the results.

There were three trials conducted in this experiment:

  1. First trial: Two basketballs were rolled down the ramp colliding and knocking each other back an equal distance
  2. Second trial: The basketball from the previous trial and a volleyball were rolled down the ramp. The volleyball was knocked back farther than the basketball
  3. Third Trial: The same basketball was used once again and a shot put were rolled down the ramp. The basketball was knocked back significantly by the shot put.

Conclusion: When objects collide the size of the object has little effect compared to the density (Mass) of the object.
“I’m excited for both of our winners,” said Andrea Kelly, Marketing Manager at Arbor Scientific. “They both encompass what we were looking for: presentation, substance and a passion for physics. We surpassed our goal of over 50 video entries and were impressed with the knowledge and creativity all had. We will definitely do similar contests in the near future.”

The submissions can be viewed in their entirety at and will eventually be moved over to the website and blog to remain resources for teachers going forward.

Thanks to everyone for your participation!

*Conceptual Physics Alive! On Demand by Paul Hewitt is online on Vimeo here!