Newton's Laws – LAB

Force & Motion
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Force & Motion
Newton's Laws – Activity
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Newton's Laws – LAB
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Bumper Car Ride

Newton's Laws – Laboratory

Purpose: This laboratory will demonstrate Newton’s Laws of Motion.


  Clay Ruler Baseball Tennis Ball
  Pool Ball Ping Pong Ball Balance Tape


  1. Go to a location in the room next to a wall.
  2. Place a piece of tape 1 meter above the floor. (This will be the point you release the balls from during the laboratory).
  3. Take the mass of each of the balls using a balance and place these masses in the observation table provided.
  4. Roll up the clay into a ball and place the ball of clay on the floor under the piece of tape. Place a piece of tape to mark the top of the clay. The set-up should be similar to the diagram below:

  1. Drop each of the balls from the 1–meter mark so that they land on the clay. Using the taped mark just above the clay, measure how much each ball dents the clay. Place that amount in the observation table provided.
  2. During this laboratory, think about how you are observing Newton’s Three Laws of Motion.

Observation Table:

Type of Ball Mass of Ball (gm) Depth of dent in clay due
to the force of the ball (cm)
Ping Pong Ball    
Tennis Ball    
Pool Ball    

Conclusion Questions:

  1. Describe one way you observed Newton’s First Law of Motion during this laboratory.
  2. Newton’s Second Law of Motion explains the relationship between mass, force and acceleration. In this experiment acceleration due to gravity was the same for each ball. What was the relationship between FORCE and MASS when acceleration was held constant?
  3. Describe one way you observed Newton’s Third Law of Motion during this laboratory.

Thinking Ahead:
  Think about the amusement park ride that is often called “Bumper Cars”. How do you experience each of Newton’s Three Laws of Motion during this ride?


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