Loads and Forces
You will Need:
What to Do:
This activity helps you learn about:
Tension: If you have a slinky, try holding each end and pulling your hands apart. What do you notice happening to the Slinky®? This is tension. This is a force that always tries to make things longer. You can think of it as a stretching force.
Compression: If you have a sponge, place it on a flat surface and push down hard. What do you notice happening to the sponge? This is compression. This is a force that always tries to make things short or smaller. You can think of it as a squashing force.
Testing Materials: Using all of the different materials you have collected, test whether the materials seem stronger under tension, compression or both? What happens if you squash or stretch the material? Does it break or ‘deform’ (change shape)?