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Students create model roller-coasters

Students create model roller-coasters
Year 7 students testing the stability of their track.
Wednesday 11th May 2011 by C. Freeman

Design Technology students from Year 7 have designed and tested roller-coasters made from newspaper. Their task was to construct a track capable of supporting and transporting a ball around a banked circuit.

Tutor group 7N split into two teams for the challenge, which they completed in around 40 minutes, with some from each group rolling up paper into weight-bearing tubes, while others fine-tuned the layout. Then Mr Browne tested each construction by rolling a tennis ball around the tracks to see which one held up best under pressure.

He said: ‘The students have already constructed a geodesic dome and a tower, so this is a further test of their construction skills. It is a very good project for promoting discussion and teamwork and it makes them to think logically about how to proceed. The students have worked really well, especially as they have only had one lesson to complete their roller-coasters. The key thing is to get the height at the start to give the ball enough momentum. One of the challenges was constructing a banked turn so the ball would follow the track at the right angle rather than falling off.’

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