STEM Field Trip
The STEM Field Trip will last approximately 3.5 hours. Students will rotate through 5 stations which will last 20 -25 minutes at each one.
Stations 1 - Traction
The materials for this station are: 3 block cars made with a different material on the bottom (indoor carpet, Formica, rubber) and an adjustable ramp with the same surface as the cars. Students will form a hypothesis to determine the angle at which sliding is initiated with each car to surface.
Station 2 - Friction
The materials for this station are: 3 block cars made with a different material on the bottom (indoor carpet, Formica, rubber conveyor belting); spring scale; spray water bottle. The objective is to determine the amount of force in motion used with each combination of car surface (bottom of the car) and table surface. In addition, the conveyor belting surface can be misted with the water bottle to illustrate why race cars with slicks don’t race in the rain.
Station 3 - Speed & Acceleration
The materials for this station are: 2 adjustable ramps; die cast cars; tape measures; stop watches. The purpose of this station is to explore the velocity of a car moving down a slope as the angle increases. The speed of the car is to be determined as it rolls down the ramp at varying angles.
Station 4 - Weight & Balance
The materials for this station are: RC cars, scales and calculators. With the car placed on scales, the students will learn that the weight of each wheel refers to the fraction of the total weight carried by each wheel. They will also learn about “cross weight” and how the fraction of weight changes per tire when the wedge bolt or jack bolt is adjusted.
Station 5 - Radio Controlled Cars
The materials for this station are: RC cars, bumpers and stop watches. The students will divide into 2 groups and engage in a series of timed races. Students will then calculate the mean, median and mode. Math skills and team building skills will be integrated in this station.
Upon completion of all 5 stations, the students are welcome to take a guided tour and see the banking of the track and other engineering/design features of the 1.5 mile speedway. Students will determine the speed of the van based on the time it took to go around the track.
During each exercise, the students will record the data, and then make a prediction based on that data. This curriculum is based on a 5th - 7th grade level. The cost is $20.00 dollars per student. There is no cost for the first 10 adults and $10.00 each additional adult. STEM times generally begin at 9:30, however times are flexible. Lunch is not included but students may pack a lunch and eat after the rotations are completed in our outdoor covered pavilion.