Max Millard
8th grade science


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To investigate the relationship between the height at which a superball is dropped and its size, and the length of time that it bounces.

Make a prediction about what will happen when you drop large and small superballs from the same heights. Does size affect the results?

1 small superball stopwatch or regular watch with second hand
1 large superball yardstick

1. The class is divided into eight teams of four people each. The teams go in the hallway and conduct their experiments away from others, to avoid interference.

2. One person holds the yardstick vertically to the floor. Another person holds a superball near the yardstick. The timekeeper uses a stopwatch or regular watch with a second hand. The recorder writes down the height at which the ball is held (starting at 3 inches above the floor), then gives the "go" signal for the ball to be dropped.

3. The timekeeper notes how long it takes for the ball to stop bouncing. The recorder writes down the total bouncing time for each drop. This process is repeated for each height at 3 inch intervals up to 3 feet.

4. Then the team does the same experiment with a large superball. The team members may exchange roles.

5. When the experiment is completed and all the data has been collected, the teams separate into pairs of two students each. Each pair is responsible for producing a typed lab report, based on the data collected. The report must include: (a) purpose (b) materials (c) procedure (d) data/observations/graph, and (d) conclusion.

Things to consider for your lab report:
Which are the manipulated, controlled and responding variables? Be sure to come up with a hypothesis.

The report must include a data table and graph. Graph must have a title, axis labeled (with units!).

Do your results confirm your hypothesis? If not, what might explain this?