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Fourth Grade, Physics Lesson Plans (14 results)

Physics is the study of matter — what is it made of? How does it behave? What laws or equations describe it? From subatomic particles, to the Big Bang, modern physicists study matter at a tremendous range of scales. There's a whole lot of interesting physics at the human scale, too.
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Try the annual Engineering Challenge from Science Buddies! Open to all students worldwide, a new challenge and prizes are announced every January. Explore the current challenge as well as ones from past years! Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
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In this fun engineering lesson plan, your students will build rubber band-powered cars using readily available craft supplies. The challenge is to build a car that goes as far as possible while making careful use of materials. Middle school and high school versions of this lesson plan are also available. You can enter your students' designs in the 2024 Science Buddies Engineering Challenge for a chance to win a cash prize for your school. Note for K-2 teachers: you can do this… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
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Try our new Science Project Pathways in Google Classroom. One tool to plan, assign, and manage a science project in your class.

Simply enter the project start date to get a customizable science project schedule that breaks the science project into a series of smaller more manageable assignments to keep students on track. The assignments use Science Buddies guide to the scientific method to take students step-by-step through a science project. From the schedule, teachers can make assignments in Google Classroom and view student progress on each assignment.

Lesson Plan Grade: 4th
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If you love doing arts and crafts with your students, this lesson plan is for you! Teach them about energy, electricity, and circuits as they build light-up sculptures, using something they are all familiar with—play dough! Clear step-by-step instructions are provided and no previous experience with circuits is required. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 4-PS3-2. Make observations to provide evidence that energy can be transferred from place to place by sound, light, heat, and electric currents.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
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Can your students lift a book off the floor with just one finger? Find out and learn about simple machines in this fun lesson plan about levers. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
Lesson Plan Grade: 4th-12th
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Students will explore the elements by designing a wind maze, a device that can direct the wind along a specific path. Learning Objectives Students will: Design and test a wind maze. Consider how to direct the wind down an intended path by creating bends in the maze. Use observations from their tests to compare solutions and iterate on their designs. NGSS Alignment This lesson helps students prepare for these Next Generation Science Standards Performance Expectations: … Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
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Add a twist to a classic activity with this fun lesson plan. Your students will design and build a ball run for a ping pong ball using nothing but paper and tape. Their goal is to make the slowest ball run possible. How long can they make it take for the ball to go through their ball run? The 2022 competition is over, but you can see what students built and learn about the winners on the 2022 Engineering Challenge summary page. Teachers, note that middle school and high school … Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
Teach your students about the engineering design process with this fun lesson plan. They will design and build a ball-launching machine to knock down a target. Optionally, they can enter their designs in the 2020 Engineering Challenge for a chance to win a cash prize for your school! Teachers, note that middle school and high school versions of this lesson plan are also available. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved.
  • 3-PS2-1. Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence of the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces on the motion of an object.
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
Students are introduced to the engineering challenges involved with interplanetary space travel. In particular, they learn about the gravity assist or "slingshot" maneuver often used by engineers to send spacecraft to the outer planets. Using magnets and ball bearings to simulate a planetary flyby, students investigate what factors influence the deflection angle of a gravity assist maneuver. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-PS2-2. Make observations and/or measurements of an object's motion to provide evidence that a pattern can be used to predict future motion. (Grade 3)
  • 4-PS3-1. Use evidence to construct an explanation relating the speed of an object to the energy of that object. (Grade 4)
Lesson Plan Grade: 4th-8th
Students design a device that can track a specific amount of time and indicate when that time has passed with a sound or visual signal. They iterate their designs and prototypes to improve repeatability. Learning Objectives Students will: Design and build a device that indicates when a specific amount of time has passed. Use simple machines in their device. Identify the ways in which energy is stored and transferred in their device. Iterate and improve their designs based… Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 3rd-5th
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Students will discover the science behind how a drone works, explore how drones are used in agriculture, and program and operate a drone for the purpose of surveying a field. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-5-ETS1-1. Define a simple design problem reflecting a need or a want that includes specified criteria for success and constraints on materials, time, or cost.
  • 3-5-ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
  • 3-PS2-1. Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence of the effects of balanced and unbalanced forces on the motion of an object.
  • 3-PS2-2. Make observations and/or measurements of an object's motion to provide evidence that a pattern can be used to predict future motion.
Lesson Plan Grade: Kindergarten-5th
Students determine the coefficient of restitution (or the elasticity) for super balls. Working in pairs, they drop balls from a meter height and determine how high they bounce. They measure, record and repeat the process to gather data to calculate average bounce heights and coefficients of elasticity. Then they extrapolate to determine the height the ball would bounce if dropped from much higher heights.Engineering Connection Mechanical engineers select materials that… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • 3-PS2-2. Make observations and/or measurements of an object's motion to provide evidence that a pattern can be used to predict future motion.
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Free science fair projects.