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SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit

SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit


In this unit, students will learn how forces affect the motion of an object. By examining car collisions, students will also learn how an understanding of motion can improve safety on the road. How are forces related to motion? How does the size of something affect how it moves?

Content in SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit is organized into 16 activities, as follows:

Activity Title Activity Type Activity Overview
14. Choosing a Safe Vehicle Talking it Over This activity introduces students to a scenario about car safety. They analyze and compare some features of two vehicles in order to choose the one they feel is safer. In the process they discover they need to know more about the science involved in accidents and in the design of vehicle safety features if they are to make a good decision. Students use a literacy strategy that helps them make a definite choice between the vehicles.
15. Measuring Speed Laboratory Students use a cart, ramp, and track to measure the time it takes for a cart to roll 100 centimeters. They then calculate speed from their distance and time measurements. They explore the units used for speed and the concept of speed as a rate of motion. They further investigate speed by designing and conducting an experiment that relates the speed of the cart to its release height on the ramp.
16. Interpreting Motion Graphs Investigation Students match segments of a distance-versus-time graph to portions of a narrative describing two students’ journeys to school. They continue to develop the concept of speed as a rate and identify that the slope of the motion graph represents the speed of an object at a given point in time. The concept of linear acceleration is introduced in the context of graph shapes.
17. Speed and Collisions Laboratory Students investigate the effect of speed on the severity of a collision. Using different release heights, students compare how far a block placed on the track moves after it has been struck by a cart. Students discover that a faster-moving cart moves the block farther. Assuming that the time of impact is about the same, the data indicates that the faster the cart is moving, the greater the force on the block. This conclusion is applied the the situation of car collisions.
18. Mass and Collision Laboratory Students investigate the effect of mass on the force of a collision. They design and carry out an investigation similar to the ones previously conducted that measures how carts of different mass move a block when they strike it.
19. Force, Acceleration, and Mass Problem Solving Students further investigate the relationship between force and other quantities, using the SI units for force and acceleration. Students find the equation that relates force, mass, and acceleration by analyzing data that is provided. They graph the relationship between these quantities and are introduced to Newton’s second law.
20. Inertia Around a Curve Laboratory Students investigate inertia by making observations of a marble’s motion around a circular track. They predict and then observe the direction the marble rolls when a section of the track is removed and the marble moves due to its inertia. They also investigate whether changing the mass of the marble affects the motion of the marble.
21. Newton’s Laws of Motion Reading Students complete a reading about forces and Newton’s three laws of motion. The reading is supported by a literacy strategy designed to reveal and address common misconceptions about force and motion. A second literacy strategy supports comprehension during the reading. Students then discuss aspects of Newton’s laws that seem to contradict daily experience.
22. The Net Force Challenge Laboratory Students use force meters to investigate the net force on a sliding block. They explore the ideas related to Newton’s laws that a nonzero net force causes a change in speed and a zero net force results in no change in speed. Students draw and annotate force diagrams showing the results of the application of balanced and unbalanced forces.
23. Breaking Distance Laboratory Students measure the braking distance of carts by releasing them onto a track with a high-friction surface. They compare the braking distance of the cart at different initial speeds and find a relationship between the initial speed of the cart and its braking distance.
24. Coming to a Stop Reading Students learn that the distance a car takes to stop is a result of two separate events— the distance traveled during the driver’s reaction time and the distance traveled once the brakes have been engaged, both of which increase with increased speed. They investigate the actual stopping distance of cars by calculating and graphing data for different speeds, road conditions, and states of driver alertness.
25. Decelerating Safely Reading Students learn about automobile safety features that decelerate a driver’s body more gradually than a driver would have experienced in an accident many years ago. They explore further the concepts of force and acceleration in the context of such safety features as seatbelts and air bags.
26. Crash Testing Investigation Students design a crash-test dummy for use in frontal collision tests. They decide the specifics of the dummy such as what quantities its sensors will measure, where to locate the sensors, and the size and materials of the dummy. They also weigh the advantages and disadvantages of using dummies of the same size.
27. Investigating Center of Mass Modeling Students are introduced to the concept of center of mass. They observe empty and loaded carts hitting a barrier and compare the stability of vehicles with different masses and centers of mass. They apply their results to vehicle design and rollover accidents.
28. Fatal Accidents Talking it Over Students further investigate car accidents and fatality rates by analyzing accident data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association. They use the data to decide what type of vehicle and what type of accident have the lowest risk of death.
29. Safety for All Role Play Building on their understanding that differences in car design can increase accident fatality rates, students role play the opinions of four fictional characters who have different opinions on whether cars should be required to be more similar. After analyzing theses opinions, students weigh the evidence and decide on a course of action.

A full suite of course tools is available for teachers, as follows:

SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit

Student Edition

The Student Edition guides investigations and provides related readings. It uses a variety of approaches to make science accessible for all students. SEPUP’s integrated literacy strategies help students process new science content, develop their analytical skills, make connections between related concepts, and express their knowledge orally and in writing.

eStudent Edition

Availible in both download and online access platforms.

SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit

Teacher Edition

The SEPUP Core Curriculum Teacher’s Edition takes you through each activity in the Student Edition and helps you see the development of concepts within the big picture of the units and the course you are teaching. It helps you set up the equipment from the kit, organize the classroom, conduct activities, and manage practical details, all of which enhance students’ learning environment. The Teacher’s Edition is packaged as a series of loose-leaf binders that you can personalize with annotations, rearrangements, and insertions. The Teacher’s Edition provides full support for teaching the program. Additional support resources can also found in the Teacher’s Edition.

Complete Material Package

All SEPUP materials packages are designed with teachers, students and environmental considerations in mind. Traditional laboratory style classrooms are not necessary to teach SEPUP. Materials packages include most of the items needed for the activities. They support multiple classes – typically up to five classes of 32 students (160 total students) – before consumables need to be replaced. It’s important to note that materials are consumed at various rates; therefore, it will not be necessary to replace all consumable items every year. Exclusive to SEPUP programs are the molded tray liners that keep everything in place and easy to locate – even in a hurry.

Online and Technology Tools

These include the Exam View suite of assessment tools and more than 100 web links for each of the three SEPUP 6-8 courses, to be used for basic instruction and enrichment.

SEPUP Texas Edition, Science Grade 8, Force and Motion unit Item # Price Quantity