Description: The top in this video continues spinning for 50 minutes with a single push. As amazing as that is it is still over six hours short of the world record. Students could design and test tops of their own that utilize either pushes or pulls.
Description: The Ollie is a difficult trick to perform since the skater is unable to pull on the skateboard. Students could watch this and other tricks and try to identify the pushes and pulls involved. Skateboarding is just one of many sports that students are already doing. They could analyze various sports to identify pushes and pulls.
Web Resources: The Ollie - Wikipedia
Description: Special caution should be taken when sitting down or getting up from a bed of nails. In this video, Steve Spangler used a motor to lift the entire bed of nails up and down safely. Each of the nails is pushing on the participant but since there are so many nails the force is distributed safely between all of the nails. This demonstration could be used in any physics unit discussing forces and pressure.
Web Resource: Bed of Nails - Wikipedia
Description: Rube Goldberg machines are named after American cartoonist Rube Goldberg who drew complicated steps involved in doing a fairly simple task (like pouring milk in a glass). Students can study these machines, or build their own, to show how energy can be converted through a series of interactions. In lower elementary classes they might be shown or built to show how pushes or pulls can change the motion of objects. As they move through school they should start to identify specific collisions, interactions, and conversions of energy.
Web Resources: Rube Goldberg Machines - Wikipedia
Description: In this dramatic slow motion video a golf ball collides with a piece of steel showing a large amount of compression. Different golf balls are designed to have varying amounts of compression based on the desired behavior of the ball. In a kindergarten class golf balls or baseballs are great examples of pushes causing changes in the motion of an object. In the upper grades this could be a great example of a collision. Students could investigate the behavior of different golf balls (or clubs) and even do some designing themselves.
Web Resource: Golf Ball - Wikipedia
Description: The Slinky was invented by Richard James, an engineer, who was working with springs to support and stabilize equipment on a ship. Simple slinky tricks show how forces (pushes and pulls) change the direction of an object. Students can design a set of stairs, or obstacles, that the Slinky can navigate. In the secondary science classroom it can be used to investigate inertia, oscillations, and Hooke's law. This phenomenon can also be used to investigate wave properties.
Web Resource: Slinky - Wikipedia
Description: The coupled pendulum can be created with either string or a spring connecting the two pendulums. With each swing energy is transferred from one pendulum to the other. If the pendulums both have the same length one pendulum comes to a complete stop before alternating motion. This phenomenon can be used to show balanced and unbalanced forces, how motion can be used to predict future motion, and the conservation of energy.
Description: The walking table uses pushes and pulls to move the table wherever it needs to be. This phenomenon can be used in kindergarten to show the difference between the two main forces (pushes and pulls). In grade three it can be used to illustrate balanced (not walking) forces and unbalanced (walking) forces.
Web Resource: Scheublin & Lindeman Design Studio
Description: In this video YouTuber UncleDaver safely navigates challenges 1-125. This toy shows how pushes and pulls can be used to change the motion of an object. It is a much simpler version of a Rube Goldberg device. A simple version of the perplexus can be build using a box, marble, tape and blocks.
Web Resources: Perplexus website