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Mrs.White's Roller Coaster Park
January 6, 2014By Donald Clark of Greene Central High School
Mrs.White's Coaster Park
By Ryann Griffin and Quentin Thigpen
Kristin White’s Greene Central High Schools Physical Science class had its performance event on display for the whole school to see during second period at Greene Central on Friday, November 22.
“When making this roller coaster, we had to think about friction, speed, Newton’s Laws, and velocity,” commented junior Ashley McMahon.
The students have been designing, creating, forming and shaping these prototypes since the beginning of the second grading period. Criteria for the project included building a model of a coaster with items representing their theme country. This model was required to control a marble which was placed at the starting point and cruised the model until it reached the ending point.
“After the roller coasters were created, the students created a diagnostic on their coaster’s speed, acceleration, and momentum around the loops and curves of their projects,” mentioned teacher Kristin White.
The prototypes were made from a styrofoam pipe that was molded to construct the coasters. Some coasters involved a loop, a curve, and even a declining hill to increase the speed of their marble. Numerous groups decorated their coasters with pipe cleaners, cotton balls, and mini trees, even exhibiting a little artistic ability by painting on their prototype.
The student’s themes were randomly chosen, and had an impact of the making and designing of their roller coaster’s design. Many groups had the colors of their country shown on their coasters; others constructed landmarks that their country is known for.
“On our roller coaster we represented our theme, which is Mexico, with the nation’s flag and colors,” said junior Amber Webber.
“I feel that I have worked my hardest on this project because I put all of my effort into this assignment to make it the best that it could be,” said junior Trey Hardy.
“Creating these roller coasters gave the students a way to relate to the objectives and apply them to a real world example,” said White.
This project helped the students apply what they had learned in class and used it to make something with their knowledge. Junior Christina Leach commented, “When making this model, it helped me and my peers to understand our objective because we were doing things more hands-on and utilizing what we have learned.”
“I would say that this has been one of my favorite projects that I have done because I learned many things while designing it, and it was also very entertaining and made me want to learn,” noted junior Sheriden Jones.
“This class has exceeded my expectations on this project because all groups personalized their coasters, and in each of the models you could see their creativity and hard work from dedication to this project,” mentioned White.