**Roller coasters **

**Grades: 4 - 8 **

Using the Giant Wall, students build a roller coaster and explore the concepts of gravity and energy. After a brief discussion with a facilitator about the forces involved to make roller coasters work students experiment with changing variables to investigate the effect of mass on speed, distance traveled, and energy.

**General Outline of Program: **

- Welcome to the Big Lab and an introduction to observation

- Construct a working model roller coaster on the Giant Wall

- Compare the class roller coasters and discuss how gravity and energy work in a roller coaster

- As a class, model an experiment to investigate whether a heavier or lighter scooter travels down a ramp faster

- Conduct experiments with ramps and roller coasters

- Discuss results and further explorations

**California State Science Standards related to program:**

4th Grade

Investigation
and Experimentation: 6.a, 6.b, 6.c, 6.d

5th Grade

Investigation
and Experimentation: 6.b, 6.c, 6.d, 6.e, 6.f, 6.g, 6.h

6th Grade

Investigation and Experimentation: 7.a, 7.b, 7.d, 7.e

7th Grade

Investigation and Experimentation: 7.a, 7.e

8th Grade

Motion: 1.a

Forces: 2.b, 2.c, 2.e

Investigation and Experimentation: 7.a, 7.b, 7.d, 7.e, 7.h

**Pre-Activities**

Paper Helicopters

**Post
Activities**

Momentum

Big Lab Field Trips | Where's the Air? | Ladybugs

Boats and Balance | Erosion | Roller coasters

Cow Eye Dissection