Most older roller coasters are pulled up that first hill. However, some newer coasters have pneumatic launch systems. That means a shot of compressed air launches the coaster up the hill. We’re going to build a simple version of that with a straw that you blow through.
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Build the Best Swimmer

Build the Best Swimmer

From Gravity

Discover how the connection between swimming and gravity!

Magnetic Field Viewer

Magnetic Field Viewer

From Electricity

You can see magnetic fields in action with this easy-to-make viewer.

Build a Craft Stick Catapult

Build a Craft Stick Catapult

From Engines!

Ancient armies used catapults in battle. But the catapult has been used as recently as World War I. In that war, soldiers used catapults to toss hand grenades at the enemy. Today, catapults are used to launch planes off the decks of huge ships called aircraft carriers. Because the runway is short on an aircraft carrier, the catapult helps get the plane into the air quickly. Try making your own!

Explore Friction on a Ramp

Explore Friction on a Ramp

From The Physics of Fun

One part of physics that affects everything you do is friction! Friction is a force that occurs when two surfaces rub against each other. Smoother surfaces generate less friction, while rough or bumpy surfaces generate more friction. Check it out!



Praise for Climate Change, also in Build It Yourself series

“Comparing Earth to a spaceship that relies on fresh water and clean air, this title in the Build It Yourself series focuses on how the planet's systems have become unbalanced, creating a climate change . . . Readers can explore these concepts in more depth through 25 accompanying activities, many of which highlight the scientific method . . . This hands-on approach will get students thinking about their own impact on climate change.”

Detailed Book Description

Where can you experience the laws of motion, the fun of physics, and the chemistry of cotton candy? The fair!

In Fairground Physics: Motion, Momentum, and Magnets with Hands-On Science Activities, readers ages 9 to 12 learn about the forces that rule our world and everything in it by examining the rides, games, and even food you might find at a county fair. Ride the carousel and discover centripetal force. Listen to the music and learn how sound waves travel through the air. Hop on a roller coaster and name the types of energy involved in whizzing you around the track and upside down!

Throughout Fairground Physics, hands-on STEM activities, essential questions, and links to online primary resources help readers learn the fundamentals of the physical world!

Try these hands-on physics projects!

  • Create mini bumper cars
  • Make ice cream
  • Design a roller coaster
  • Build a dunk tank
Available In:
Paperback, $17.95
Hardcover, $22.95
Includes: Table of Contents | Glossary | Resources | Index | Metric Conversions Chart
Specs: 8x10 size | 4-color | 128 pages
Subject: Science
Content Focus: Physical Science | Physics


What Science Can You Find at the Fair?

Welcome to the Fair!

Chapter 1
A Little History

Chapter 2
Make Some Motion

Chapter 3
Feel the Force

Chapter 4
Got Energy?

Chapter 5
Have Some Heat

Chapter 6
Ride the Waves

Metric Conversions
Essential Questions