What Are Some Examples of Force and Motion for Kids?

Helpful examples of motion for children include pushing toy cars; throwing dodgeballs, baseballs or footballs; dropping bowling balls; and throwing paper airplanes. Because force is connected to motion, various levels of force applied to these motion examples shows how differences in force contribute to differences in motion.

An easy way to define force for children is as “a push or a pull.” Because there are different types of forces, different examples might be appropriate for the different kinds. What proves very useful, especially for children, is to show an example and then ask a question. For instance, for frictional force a teacher might slide a toy car across a rough surface and say, “I applied a force to the car by pushing it. If the car had a force act on it to put it into motion, why did it stop?”

The key to teaching science well is to question phenomena children are familiar with. Concepts that are connected should be taught together. Following examples about frictional force, show examples of inertia. Take two toy cars, one with much more mass than the other, and let them roll done a slope. Because the one with more mass has more inertia, it travels a greater distance. Ask the question, “If both cars have the same force pull them down the slope (gravity), why does one travel further than the other?”