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What does friction do?


Children learn about friction and what it does by measuring how fast they travel down a slide on different materials.


Children test how well different sheet materials reduce friction. Get into position on the first material at the top of a slide. Measure and record how long it takes for the slider to reach an agreed position. Repeat the test two more times using different materials, ensuring you always slide in the same way. Children use their results to identify the materials that saw the quickest slide. They look for and suggest scientific reasons for their results.


Friction slows a moving object. Typically materials with a smooth surface have less friction than those with a rough surface.