Davis Creek Elementary
LEGO Slot Car Project
DC Fifth grade students make slot cars with different sized drive wheels, but traction wheels kept the same, to compare distance traveled
The Slot Car Project there are several things that must be checked.  Make sure to measure the strings that tie the weights checking that they are the same length.  They should be 30 centimeters.  The weights (suspended mass) provide potential energy, the wheels of the car provide traction.  The car with the largest drive wheel should go the shortest distance, but will go the fastest.  The middle car should rate in the middle, and the smallest car will go the farthest, but will go the slowest.

Slot cars are made from the LEGO Simple Motorized Machine Set.  Instructions can be found in AIMS Brick Layers II book page 62.
The meter sticks must be exactly evenly spaced to produce accurate data
Track is made using meter sticks, tape, and two desks the same height
Some students may serve as referees to ensure accurate data
Make sure the track is spaced evenly and that the cars travel smoothly on the track
Test out the track to make sure the cars move equally well on the equally spaced track
A classroom chalkboard can be used to record the data of the three trial runs
Three trial runs should give data that can be trusted
Students must hold the cars in place until the signal is given to release
The slot cars travel different distances
Trial after trial must be attempted until everyone is satisfied that the resulting data is fairly gotten
Weights hang from the slot cars to provide potential energy
Read, set, GO!!!!!
The class became quite excited about the progress and results of the "race"
Serious referees watch
Microsoft Excel spreadsheet of resulting data
Students may draw tables, graphs, and written descriptions of the race
Now, I'm going to make sure this is carefully done!
Good view of the three different drive wheels
The Slot Car track provides a valuable lesson in math, science energy concepts, and also provides an opportunity for written expression, use of a spreadsheet, and is a whole lot of fun!
Slot Car lesson in AIMS Brick Layers II
How to construct the cars
Teacher instrucftions
Student data collection
Actual Microsoft Excel spreadsheet of LEGO Slot Car data
Microsoft Excel makes a good comparison chart for the LEGO Slot Car Run Trials
Davis Creek Elementary
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