Activity Introduction

Ever wondered how to get your race car to go a bit faster? Different surfaces create different kinds of friction and can really slow your car down or let it speed up! This is an easy and fun activity that you won’t need many tools to do! 

Safety Advice: If you are using a measuring tape such as the one shown, the edges of the tape can be very sharp!

Young kids will need guidance on completing this activity but it will be super fun and interesting for the whole family!

Ideal for: Early Learning Age 3-4

Themes: 

  • investigate 
  • playtime 
  • brain teasers 

Time required: 20 minutes 

Curriculum connections: Science, Mathematics, Numeracy, The Arts

Tips for Parents and Carers

Before the exercise help your child to think about which surface they think will make cars go the fastest. You can use many different surfaces for the ramps other than the ones suggested. Use whatever you have in the house and encourage them to play around with the elevation of the ramp for extra fun. If you have more than one kid it could be fun to have them all choose one car or object that they want to race at the same time.

Lesson & Curriculum Details

  •  EYLFOutcome 4: Children are confident and involved learners

Resources Required

  • Box or container to rest your ramp on
  • Cardboard sheet or ramp style base
  • Foil
  • Piece of paper and pen if you want to record the scores 
  • Ruler or measuring tape 
  • Sandpaper
  • Stopwatch – could use phone or watch
  • Toy Car or other object that will roll down the hill
  • Observation Worksheet (taking it further)

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Worksheets

Student Worksheet

Ramp It Up - Activity Instructions

Ever wondered how to get your race car to go a bit faster? Different surfaces create different kinds of friction and can really slow your car down or let it speed up! This is an easy and fun activity that you won’t need many tools to do!

Objects move faster or slower based on the friction they encounter. Have you ever noticed that you go faster down a smooth plastic slide than you would a bumpy ramp? This is because when two objects rub against each other they create something called friction!

Safety Advice: If you are using a measuring tape such as the one shown, the edges of the tape can be very sharp!

Part A: Setting up the experiment

Step 1. Lay out your different ramps and guess which one will have the fastest time and longest distance. Write your guess down to see if you got it right at the end! 

Step 2. Get your container and angle the cardboard plank to make a ramp at the desired elevation. 

Step 3. Using your parents/caregivers help

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