MS-PS2-1 Apply Newton’s Third Law to design a solution to a problem involving the motion of two colliding objects.
Clarification Statement: Examples of practical problems could include the impact of collisions between two cars, between a car and stationary objects, and between a meteor and a space vehicle.
Assessment Boundary: Assessment is limited to vertical or horizontal interactions in one dimension.
This resource is explicitly designed to build towards this performance expectation.
Comments about Including the Performance Expectation
The purpose of the game is for students to intuit solutions to the problem of whacking their goal puck into a goal by colliding game pucks with it. The game pucks themselves can also collide with each other and with a “bouncy” barrier. In the two-player mode (recommended), players must also consider, and strategize for, the motion of the other player’s pucks. This activity would work best as either an introduction to, or an assessment of, the Performance Indicator, as it is a stand-alone game and does not overtly include the exact words “Newton’s Third Law of Motion”, though the “How to Play” section explicitly tells players that both pucks will respond to an impact even if one was sitting still, because both pucks push on each other. If used as an introduction, follow-up questions can address the relationships students found between force and motion, mass and motion, and friction and motion. These can be used as a jumping-off point for a discussion of Newton’s Laws. If used as an assessment, the teacher can ask students to either describe or draw outcomes of certain angles of collisions, perhaps as a “play-by-play” of a game, with followup “sports analysis” of what worked and what didn’t work and why. Ideas for sample introductory questions may be found at Mrs. Smith’s 7th Grade Science (http://stjschoolscsmith.weebly.com/newtons-laws-of-motion.html and click on “Important Concepts”) and at Mr. Morkert’s 3 Puck chuck wiki page (http://thundermacs.ahsd25.wikispaces.net/Three+Puck+Chuck). It is NOT recommended that “student success” at the game be corresponded to understanding of the Performance Expectation, as students may be able to succeed without any knowledge of “why”, and/or may understand the concepts well, but have difficulty with hand/eye coordination and “making the game do what they want”.