Science Concept

Gravity and Inertia

Develop and use a model to describe the role of gravity and inertia in orbital motions of objects in our solar system. As you read, focus on systems, an organized group of related objects. In this section, it is important to examine how the objects in our solar system are affected by gravity and inertia. Most of the objects that are part of our solar system are constantly orbiting the Sun, the star of our solar system. Mass is a measure of the amount of matter in an object. Everything that has mass also has gravity. Gravity is the attraction of one particle or body to another. You have gravity. Your pencil has gravity. Larger masses have a stronger gravitational force, or the measurement of the pull of gravity, than smaller masses.

Force arrow pushing down on the earth

The greater the mass of an object, the greater the gravitational pull it has on other objects (ck12.org - Sixth Grade Science, Gravity and Inertia, p 26).

Project Goal

Give students real world experience with coding, collecting data, analyzing data, and reporting results using MakeCode’s block programming and a micro:bit with its sensors.

Prior Knowledge

Students need to have a basic knowledge of how to code using block style programming and download a program to a micro:bit using MakeCode.

Student Outcomes

Students will:

  • Create experiments to collect data using micro:bits and the acceleration sensor on them.
  • Setup different experiments to observe the gravity effect.
  • Code the micro:bits to collect data remotely over the micro:bit radios.
  • Analyze the data collected.

Materials Needed

  • 2 micro:bits with batteries connected

Two micro:bit showing 0 and 6

  • A longer USB micro:bit cable
  • Spreadsheet for data analysis
  • Padding for one micro:bit for gravity testing

Adapted from “Gravity, Motion, and Waves“ by C Lyman CC BY-NC-SA