EK students race to learn about kinetic energy


O’FALLON – The fourth grade students at Estelle Kampmeyer Elementary School have recently been learning about potential
energy and kinetic energy.

Students have discussed the transfer of energy and how the amount of stored energy relates to the amount of kinetic energy you have after the transfer has occurred.

Each pair of students built a ‘Rubber-band Roller’ using a cup, two plastic lids, a straw, a rubber-band, two beads, and a square piece of cardboard. They measured a distance of eight feet and ten feet from the start line. This two feet range was called the sweet spot. Each pair had to try to get their vehicle to stop in the ‘sweet spot’ in order to achieve success.  The students had to vary the number of times they twisted their straw to change the amount of stored energy that was transferred to kinetic energy.  If their vehicle went to far, they twisted fewer times.  If the vehicle didn’t travel far enough, they twisted more times.  Each attempt was recorded on a lab sheet that allowed the students to try ten times. (Submitted Photos)