Physics Science Project Ideas,Toys, and a Rocket Alarm Clock

Rocket Alarm clock for Physics Science Project IdeasHere are some cool science toys that should give you some physics science project ideas.  Some are just for fun and the last one is a space age alarm clock to “launch” you out of bed.

Check the prices, some of which are nice and low.  Yes, I scoured the catalog for you.  These are from the new beta Amazon Supply site, which looks a little different but offers some way cool science stuff. 

 

Da Vinci Catapult Kit

This catapult is remarkably easy to assemble (I know from experience) and provides a reliable means of testing the behavior of various small objects propelled through space.

Perfect for hypothesis-based physics science project ideas involving projectile behavior

Will a greater mass with the same surface area (say, a ping pong ball partially filled with sand) fly farther? Is there a point of diminishing returns, that is, when the ping pong ball becomes so heavy that it flies a shorter distance?  Will denser objects (metal) fly farther than a piece of wood or a styrofoam peanut?

Basic Mousetrap Vehicle Kit

“Build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to your door,” is a phrase attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson.

“Build a better mousetrap car and you may have the makings of an engineer.” — Astro Gremlin

This model car demonstrates velocity, force, motion, and Newton’s laws of physics, and allows optimization of performance via engineering design. Students build the car from the kit and can modify the car for improved performance and greater speed. Kit includes a mousetrap, 12- and 18-inch long balsa wood pieces, standard-sized compact discs for wheels, wheel spacers, thrust washers, 12-inch brass tubing pieces, ultra-thin string, and instructions.  Bring your imagination and devise a novel physics experiment.

fan care for physics science project ideas

Force and Reaction Fan Car

  • The fan car demonstrates the difference between force and mass
  • Can be used to demonstrate friction in combination with an inclined plane
  • How many good physics science project ideas start at only 14 bucks?

Impact Car with Spring Scale

“Force equals mass times velocity squared.”  – John Madden, explaining the physics of football.

How would you and your kid like to design some physics science project ideas around car crashes?  I thought so!

  • The impact car is equipped with a spring scale and slide
  • The slide remains in its displaced position until reset
  • Additional mass is added to the recessed cavity inside the car and the experiment is repeated
  • The student can take direct readings from the scale to measure the increasing force
Use the impact car for your physics project and then drop by driver’s ed class to demonstrate why big rigs deserve our respect.

Bottle Rocket Launcher and Launch Pad (if you need it)

For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.” — Isaac Newton 

For every kid, there is an experience that opens the mind forever to new ideas.” — Astro Gremlin

You pump up a soda bottle partially filled with water and it turns into a rocket.  Is this the experiment that opens that one kid’s mind to science?  How can pressure turn water into rocket fuel?  Would this device work in a vacuum?  How much water would it take to reach escape velocity and leave Earth?  Does the temperature of the water affect flight?  What is the optimum apportionment of air and water space assuming the same pressure?  Hypotheses anyone?  Make sure to video.

10 Newton Dynamometer for Physics Science Project Measurements

  • Color-coded precision dynamometer
  • Transparent plastic casing with easy-to-read scale
  • Protection against over-extension of the spring and zero-point calibration capability
  • Scale division: 1 percent of total measuring range

This is your basic tool for measuring force and a great deal if you ask me.  How much is a Newton?   The net force required to accelerate a mass of one kilogram at a rate of one meter per second squared.  For example, on Earth’s surface, a mass of 1 kg exerts a force of approximately 9.8 Newtons.  Not to be confused with the force exerted by Fig Newtons, which are cookies.   

Need to Measure More Newtons?  It’s going to cost you ($2 more).

Precision Dynamometer, 100 newton

Budget Spectroscope

Several physics science project ideas come to mind that use the spectroscope to observe the wavelengths of light given off by glowing objects such as light bulbs, dimmed light bulbs, burning candle wicks and the like.

  • Hand spectroscope
  • An uncomplicated yet still fully functional spectroscope
  • For observing spectra and spectral lines
  • Made of cardboard and plastic with built-in grid
Here is the full kit but to be frank it’s not “budget” — take a look anyway to get some ideas for sticking various elements in a flame to make different spectra.  Get the idea?

 Archimedes Principle Bucket and Cylinder 

“Eureka!” – Archimedes

“That means ‘I have it’ in Greek” – Astro Gremlin

Duplicate the famous “bathtub scene” from ancient Greek science when Archimedes figured out how to determine the volume of an irregularly shaped crown to compare its density to gold (and whether the king had been cheated by the goldsmith).

  • The cylinder fits into the cup exactly and the whole unit can be hung from a spring scale and weighed
  • This unit is then lowered into a container of water and the reduction weight noted
  • Experiments prove that the weight loss equals the weight of the water displaced
  • Instructions included
  • Measures 1-1/2″ diameter x 4-1/2″ height

Fossil Food Cake Molds, 3D “Fossil” at Bottom

Just for fun.

  • Dig into your dessert
  • Turn dessert time into an archeological adventure
  • Each Fossil Food silicone cupcake baker contains a 3D “fossil” at the bottom
  • Each set of 4 molds is packaged in a gift box

 Launch Pad Alarm Clock

To start learning science, you need to wake up.

  • The rocket alarm clock wakes you up with a countdown before sounding an alarm and launching skyward across your room
  • The only way to turn the alarm off is to get out of bed
  • Place it back onto its launch pad base

So there you go, plenty of gear selected to offer you some interesting physics science project ideas and hopefully not break your budget.  

Remember presentation is important so get yourself some science fiction sounds to play at random while showing your project.

Sci Fi Sound Effects Machine

The descriptions are a bit scant because Amazon just launched Amazon Supply.  Feel free to leave reviews and help other budding physicists get their projects off the ground.

Here’s a fun bonus showing balls behaving like pendulums of different lengths.  Each ball bounces with a fixed frequency.  They go out of phase and then back to where they started!

Click on this neat WAVE PENDULUMS site to see more!

6 Responses to Physics Science Project Ideas,Toys, and a Rocket Alarm Clock

  1. Rose Webster says:

    Astro G,

    There is indeed a force exerted by Fig Newtons. On this 30 second commercial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UyI3IL46yq4, I predict the Fig Newton dancing weighs about 165 lbs (74 kg). And I am guessing by the pace of movement in the dancing that the Fig Newton’s acceleration is roughly 1/2 a meter per second squared.

    So, F = ma therefore 74 kg x 0.5 = 37 Newtons that the Newton exerted (not taking into account gravitational pull and other extras). Sadly, the Newton dancing needed a green screen backdrop and a totally different background. I could definitely help him with my latest.

  2. Chris says:

    This is great stuff Astro! The more we can expose our kids (and adults) to science the better. I can tell you’ve taken great care to pick out and curate interesting science experiments and kits that are fun to do.

    I will submit your site to some of the social sites listed on the left here. Science is great fun, and I hope I can help others discover your site :)
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  3. dave says:

    Astro – I like all of them. It would be fun to be a kid again and spend the summer working on these little projects. Experimenting, learning, and having fun – those were the good ‘ol days! Rockets are particularly cool.

    One grown-up toy that is pretty cool is the electric car. Wouldn’t it be interesting to see the streets full of these non-polluting, and QUIET vehicles? Anyone who lives near a street or street corner would appreciate that!
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