Third Grade

How Can You Slide Faster Down a Slide?

Question to Explore

How can you slide faster down a slide?

What is friction? Which objects have the least amount of friction and why? 


  • large piece of cardboard for slide
  • pennies for sliders
  • tape
  • sandpaper square
  • tinfoil square
  • plastic square or button
  • foam or sponge
  • cardboard square
  • any other materials you would like to test


  1. Cut each material into equal sized squares
  2. Make your sliders by taping pennies onto each square
  3. Decide a way to test your sliders (two at a time, all at once, many pennies vs. no pennies, etc.)
  4. Decide which materials have the least and the most amount of friction. How do you know?


Teams decided how best to test their sliders to compare different amounts of friction. Many teams raced their sliders two at a time. The fastest slider was the tinfoil one because it had the least amount of friction.