A Shot Under Pressure

You've got to pump it up! Using the equations for projectile motion and Bernoulli's Principle, class members calculate the water pressure in a water gun. The pupils collect data on the number of pumps and distance traveled in order to determine values used in the equations. They then create and analyze graphs to determine the relationship between the pressure, the number of pumps, and the distance the water travels.

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CCSS: Designed
NGSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas

  • Have the class get comfortable with the projectile motion formula and Bernoulli’s equation by solving unrelated examples
Classroom Considerations

  • Conduct the activity outside
  • Requires a pump-action water gun
Pros

  • Includes an example to work together as a class
  • Provides sample answers
  • Includes suggestions for pre- and post-activity assessments
Cons

  • None
NGSS