Teetering in the Garden: Lessons in Physics
Teeter Totter Physics
- A teeter totter is technically a form of lever in which the fulcrum--where the teeter totter is hinged--is placed exactly at the center. When two equal weights sit at equal distances from the fulcrum, the teeter totter is equally balanced. Any small force applied by either end will cause the teeter totter to move up and down.
Hold Still, Jesse!
Riding a Teeter Totter with Different Weights
The physics of the teeter totter shows the way to allow two children of different weights to successfully ride the equipment. For best results, the heavier child should sit closer to the fulcrum than the lighter child. The lighter child's increased distance from the fulcrum will make up for the lesser weight. This can be tested by both children sitting on the teeter totter at differing distances from the center. When the teeter totter moves easily with the slightest effort from the children, they are balanced.
Way to Study, Kids!
|Analyzing Data and Drawing a Conclusion|
*The donkey ears are not an official part of the experiment.