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Gearing Up for Pedal Power

The month of May is national "Bike to Work" month, and this week the League of American Bicyclists is encouraging people to leave their cars parked and get on a bike for the morning commute to work or to school!

The environmental and energy benefits of a pedal-powered commute are obvious, and you might save a few dollars when you puts your pedals to work instead of your engine. There is, of course, a bit of a trade-off in terms of speed. You'll need to allow a little extra time, depending on how far you need to go.

If you want to figure out a strategy for maximum speed (keeping safety in mind!), then you need to dig deep into gears and the impact of gear ratios on speed. There's a reason your bike has multiple gear and speed settings!

The Science Buddies science fair project "Jack and Jill Went Up a Hill and Came Biking Down After" helps uncover the relationship between gears and speed.

Science Buddies Science Activities

Science Buddies Summer Science Roundup


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Catch the annual Perseids meteor shower and tie in some fun family astronomy science with an exploration of parallax. How far away are the things we see in the sky?

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School and family science weekly spotlight: make a solar oven from household and recycled materials.

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With different kinds of dried beans, plastic cups, and water, kids can model rocks and observe the way different sized particles in rocks affect how much water a rock can hold.

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Students can experiment with the engineering design process by trying to improve the durability of a simple handheld device.

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School and family science weekly spotlight: melting ice chemistry.

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For families living in drought conditions, careful monitoring of water usage is especially important. With hands-on science and engineering projects, students can investigate water-saving strategies and science and engineering related to water conservation. Above: The effect of drought can be...



Your Science!
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