The Elevator Ride Interactive is an adjustable-size file that displays nicely on tablets such as the iPad, on Chromebooks, and on laptops and desktops. The size of the Interactive can be scaled to fit the device that it is displayed on. The compatibility with iPads, other tablets, and Chromebooks make it a perfect tool for use in a 1:1 classroom.  This Interactive does not display as nicely on all phones and we do not recommend its use on many phones.


Teaching Ideas and Suggestions:

The topic of weightlessness is almost certain to arise at sometime during an introductory physics course - whether it is part of the curriculum or simply a topic of students' curiosity. The sensations that a person experiences on a roller coaster ride or a elevator ride are explained by Newton's laws of motion. Thus, the topic of weightlessness could be introduced during a Newton's Laws unit. Alternatively, the topic of weightlessness could be treated during a unit on satellite motion since occupants of satellites experience circular motion. This interactive is all about those sensations of weightlessness and weightiness. It is intended for use near the middle to later stages of a learning cycle on either Newton's second law or satellite motion. It can be used as a demonstration, an open-ended student exploration, or as a guided activity. The accompanying Activity page is an example of how the Elevator Ride Interactive can be used as a guided activity.

Related Resources

There are numerous resources at The Physics Classroom website that serve as very complementary supports for the Elevator Ride Interactive. These include:
  • Minds On Physics Internet Modules:
    The Minds On Physics Internet Modules include a collection of interactive questioning modules that help learners assess their understanding of physics concepts and solidify those understandings by answering questions that require higher-order thinking. Assignment CG9 of the Circular Motion and Gravitation module provides great complements to this Interactive. They are best used in the middle to later stages of the learning cycle. Visit the Minds On Physics Internet Modules.
  • Curriculum/Practice: Several Concept Development worksheets at the Curriculum Corner will be very useful in assisting students in cultivating their understanding, most notably ...


    Visit the Curriculum Corner.

  • Labwork: 
    Simulations should always support (never supplant) hands-on learning. The Laboratory section of The Physics Classroom website includes several hands-on ideas that complement this Interactive. One notable lab idea is ...

    The Mini Drop Lab

    Visit The Laboratory.
  • Science Reasoning Activities:
    Science classrooms should be filled with reasoning activities. There is one related activity in the Circular Motion section of the Science Reasoning Center that will challenge students to employ close reading, data analysis, and logical reasoning. The activity is named ...

    Weightlessness Training

    Visit the Science Reasoning Center.

Additional resources and ideas for incorporating Elevator Rider into an instructional unit on Newton's Laws or Circular Motion can be found at the Teacher Toolkits section of The Physics Classroom website.  Visit Teacher Toolkits.

Visit: Interactive | Activity