Education Technology

Bell Ringer: Friction on the Soles of Your Shoes

Activity Overview

Students use precompiled data to calculate the coefficient of friction between a shoe and the floor.

Key Steps

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    Students calculate the coefficients of static and kinetic friction for a hiking boot sliding across a wooden floor. They use a precompiled force vs. time data set.

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    First, students identify the maximum force of static friction acting on the boot. This force is equal to the maximum force that must be applied to the boot to get it to start moving.

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    Students then determine the force of sliding friction between the boot and the floor. This value is equal to the average force that must be applied to the boot to keep it sliding. They identify this value using a parallel line.


    Finally, students calculate the coefficients of kinetic and static friction for the boot.