Oscar’s Trash Launch

Use Oscar’s trash launcher to learn more about force.

Help kids use Oscar’s trash launcher to catapult pieces of garbage into Oscar’s trash can. Point out that the more the spring is pushed down (or compressed) the farther the trash will be launched. This is because, as they compress the spring, they are putting more force on the it. 

After playing, explore force together in your own environment. Invite kids to push or pull a wagon or stroller. Compare an empty wagon or stroller to one filled with heavy objects. Which one takes more force to push or pull?