Hooked on science: Tablecloth science

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Here's an experiment you can try at the Thanksgiving Day dinner table that might get the entire family "Hooked on Science."

Materials

* Several heavy glass dishes

* Tablecloth without a hem

* Square table with an edge

Instructions

STEP 1: With an adult present, place the tablecloth on the table and then arrange the glass dishes on the tablecloth.

STEP 2: Grab the edges of the tablecloth and pull down toward the floor quickly.

Explanation

The dishes stayed as you quickly removed the tablecloth because of inertia. Inertia describes how all objects tend to resist change in motion.

Jason Lindsey is a Science Outreach Educator with Hooked on Science. Check out his website Hooked On Science at hooked onscience.org for webcasts and experiments that might get you hooked on science. Send him your science questions at jlindsey@hookedonscience.org. More science experiments can be found at www.semissourian.com.

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