|Name of Activity||Tow Truck|
|Keywords||steep, ramp, tow, towing, weight, gears, gear up, gear down, building, design, friction, gravity, center of gravity|
|Grade Level||4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9+|
|Time||1 Hour Total|
|Brief Description||Build a car that can climb a steep ramp while towing a weight (10 batteries) behind it.
Using gears to gear down is necessary for this challenge. This activity is more challenging
than a regular ramp climb and may require some complex building and design.
|Lesson Objectives:||– To learn to build and use gears.
– To learn about gravity, center of gravity, and friction.
|Materials Needed:||NXT kits
batteries for weight
computers running NXT Software
|Preparation and Set Up:||Build a ramp.
Set up computers running NXT software.
Arrange student in groups of two.
|Necessary Background||It is more difficult for cars to climb steep slopes for different reasons. In this lesson you
can discuss with the class these different forces that affect the ability of the car to
climb the slope:
Friction – friction is the force acting between the surfaces of the car (tires) and
|Extensions:||What is the steepest ramp that the car can climb?
What is the heaviest weight that the car can tow?
Calculate the gear ratio.
What is the quickest that the car can travel up the ramp?