Physics may be one of the most challenging sciences, but it’s also with us all the time in our everyday lives. Help your child stop and notice.
Thinking about science in real-life terms can help your child master the subject. Sound difficult? Relax. It’s only a matter of translating the language of physics into the language of your child.
- Rest. This is the state of the book, gum wrapper or item of clothing your child leaves on the counter or the floor! An object is at rest when it is simply lying there and not moving at all.
- Inertia. This is your child after dropping the item. She knows she should pick up the item and put it away, but doesn’t feel like it. Inertia is a fancy term for resisting a change from one type of motion to another.
- Force. This is you. Force makes change happen. When you come along and tell your child she won’t be going out this weekend unless everything is picked up, you exert a force on your child. This force overcomes her inertia. She puts herself in motion and picks up what she left lying around.
- Mass. This is one way to tell how hard your child will have to work at cleaning up. Smaller objects (the gum wrapper) that are lighter and easier to move have less mass. Bigger objects (a stack of books) that are heavier and more difficult to move have more mass.