Sunset Middle students are making their own roller coasters, but they’re different than any you’ll find at an amusement park. These coasters are made of paper and built to carry a marble.
“This is our first project in sixth grade science, and we’re measuring kinetic and potential energy,” said science teacher Jared Turner said. “It’s also the first major group project, which really allows them to learn about the difference between their peers. They also learn how to work together to accomplish a task.”
The project scores are determined on two factors: how long it takes for the marble to reach the end of the track and how much it cost to make the track. It was trial and error to find the best way to create the roller coaster and get a good score.
“You have to make the structure really strong or it’ll fall over when you’re not there,” said CJ Wyler. “That’s what happened to us on our first try, so we had to start over from scratch.”
Despite any mishaps, students are enjoying their lesson in physics.
“We’ve had a lot of fun,” CJ said. “I work with my group members really well, and I think that helps.”