3 Comments

  1. billwilkinson

    / Reply

    Nice lesson- works well across different age groups. Add more structure if you like, or remove it (making it more inquiry). Simple materials. Surprising results. And best of all, students are doing real science.

  2. Elizabeth

    / Reply

    You’re not accurately measuring tape adhesiveness if, for example, the duct tape has small ridges on the other side that add resistance to the rolling marble.

  3. billwilkinson

    / Reply

    That’s true, and would be something you could point out to students, if you want.

    There are a lot of things besides ridges that could, and do, affect how far the marble rolls. Another big one is oil on your hand. Every time you handle the marble you put oil on it which would also interfere with the adhesive-ness of the tape. (I used to have students wipe down the marble after every run and then release it without ever touching it, just to guard against this. Then I calmed down and decided that I wanted this lesson to be more straightforward.)
    I think either approach- noticing every little thing or not- is ok. Just decide beforehand what you want students to get out of it.

Leave a Comment