Not sure I’m smarter than a first grader

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Not sure I’m smarter than a first grader

Post by Yayas_Mimi »

My 7 yo granddaughter has a curious mind. The other morning on the way to school, the car wet with dew. When we stopped, a drip started to run down the windshield. Before the drip reached the bottom, we turned which made the drip go sideways rather than down. She asked why. I’m not sure if I gave her the correct info but I feel like there were 3 things at play. When we stopped and the dew on the car did not stop which caused the drip. Gravity which pulled the drip down the windshield. Was the third operation which pulled the drip to go sideways centrifugal force? Gravitational pull? Silly I know but I want to encourage her curiosity and observation skills in addition to having correct answers suited for a first grader. Thanks!! :)
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Re: Not sure I’m smarter than a first grader

Post by audreyln »


I love your granddaughter's curiosity and I love your commitment to explaining the physical world to her! Your explanation to her was correct.

When the car was coming to a stop the drop of water continued to move forward due to momentum. Additionally, gravity was working to pull it down the windshield. When the car turned, centrifugal force caused the drop to move sideways on the windshield.

Unfortunately, the momentum activities on ScienceBuddies are designed for high school aged students but you may find some good activities for a first grader by searching online. This activity for centrifugal force might be a fun one for your granddaughter: ... centrifuge

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