Skill and Practice Worksheets
Skill Sheets
Skill sheets are numbered according to textbook chapter. If more than one skillsheet goes with a particular chapter, the chapter number is followed by a letter.
Unit One: Forces and Motion
1
2
3A
3B
3C
3D
Speed Problems Acceleration Problems Newton's Second Law Mass vs Weight Momentum Applying Newton’s Laws of Motion
Unit Two: Work and Energy
4A
4B
5A
5B
5C
Mechanical Advantage Gear Ratios Work Power Potential and Kinetic Energy
Unit Three: Electricity and Magnetism
7A
7B
8A
8B
8C
9A
9B
9C
Using an Electric Meter Voltage, Current, and Resistance Ohm's Law Electrical Power Electrical Power and Ohm's Law Parallel and Series Circuits Open and Closed Circuits Electric Circuit Project
Unit Four: Sound and Waves
11
12
Harmonic Motion Waves
Unit Five: Light and Optics
15A
15B
Ray Diagrams The Law of Reflection
Unit Six: Properties of Matter
16
17A
17B
17C
17D
18A
18B
Indirect Measurement Density Ratios and Proportions Buoyancy Gases and Pressure Atoms, Isotopes, and Ions Electrons and the Periodic Table
Unit Seven: Changes in Matter
19A
19B
19C
19D
19E
20A
20B
21A
Dot Diagrams Chemical Formulas Naming Chemical Compounds The Mole and Avogadro’s Number Calculating Formula Mass Chemical Equations Predicting Product in a Reaction Predicting Chemical Equations
Unit Eight: Water and Solutions
23A
23B
25A
Solubility Making Solutions Calculating pH
Unit Nine: Heating and Cooling
26A
26B
28A
Temperature Scales Specific Heat Calorimetry
Skill Builders
Skill builders are organized alphabetically and are meant to be used when students need to practice basic skills.
Calculating Slope Dimensional Analysis Fractions Review International System of Measurements Internet Research Skills Interpreting Graphs Lab Report Format
Making Graphs Problem Solving with Rates Reading Strategies Science Vocabulary Scientific Processes Significant Digits Solving Equations Working with Quantities and Rates
Name:
Skill Sheet 1
Speed Problems
This skill sheet will allow you to practice solving speed problems. To determine the speed of an object you need to know the distance traveled and the time taken to travel that distance. However, by rearranging the formula for speed, v = d/t, you can also determine the distance traveled or the time it took for the object to travel that distance, if you know the speed. For example,
Equation… Gives you… If you know…
v 
= d/t 
speed 
time and distance 
d 
= v × t 
distance 
speed and time 
t 
= d/v 
time 
distance and speed 
1. Solving problems
Solve the following problems using the speed equation. The first problem is done for you.
1. What is the speed of a cheetah that travels a total of 112.0 meters in 4.0 seconds?
speed
d 112.0 m

t
4.0 sec

==
=  28 m
sec
2. A bicycle rider travels 60.0 kilometers in 3.5 hours. What is the cyclist's average speed?
3. What is the average speed of the car that traveled a total of 300.0 miles in 5.5 hours?
4. How much time would it take for the sound of thunder to travel 1,500 meters if sound travels at the speed of 330 m/s?
5. How much time would it take for an airplane to reach its destination if it traveled at an average speed of 790 kilometers/hour for a distance of 4,700 kilometers?
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Skill Sheet 1 Speed Problems
6. How far can a person run in 15 minutes if they run at an average speed of 16 km/hr? (Hint:
Remember to convert minutes to hours)
7. A snail can move approximately 0.30 meters per minute. How many meters can the snail travel is 15 minutes?
2. Unit conversion
So far we have been mostly using the metric system for our problems. Now let’s try to convert to the English System of measurement so that we can better understand the meaning of our answers to the questions above. Remember that there are 1,609 meters in one mile. Don't forget to include all units and cancel appropriately. These questions refer to problems in part 1.
1. In problem 1.1, what is the speed of the cheetah in miles/hour?
28 m
 ×  _{×} 
3600 sec
1 mile
1609 m
sec
1 hour
=  63 miles hour
2. In problem 1.5, what is the speed of the airplane in miles/ hour?
3. In problem 1.6, what is the distance traveled in miles?
4. You now know that there are 1,609 meters in a mile. There number of feet in a mile is 5,280 feet. Use these equalities to answer the following problems.
a. How many centimeters equals one inch?
b. What is the speed of the snail in problem 1.7 in inches per minute?
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Skill Sheet 2
Acceleration Problems
This skill sheet will allow you to practice solving acceleration problems. Remember that acceleration is the rate of change in the speed of an object. In other words, at what rate does and object speed up or slow down? A positive value for acceleration refers to the rate of speeding up, and negative value for acceleration refers to the rate of slowing down. The rate of slowing down is also called deceleration. To determine the rate of acceleration you use the formula:
Acceleration
=  Final speed – Beginning speed Change in Time
1. Solving acceleration problems
Solve the following problems using the equation for acceleration. Remember the units for acceleration are meters per second per second or m/sec ^{2} . The first problem is done for you.
1. A biker begins to move from a speed of 0.0 m/s to a final speed of 25.0 m/s in 10 seconds. What is the acceleration of the biker?
acceleration
=
25.0 m 
0.0 m 
25.0 m 
 –  
 
sec
sec

10 sec
2.5 m
== 
sec

10 sec
sec ^{2}
2. A skater increases her velocity from 2.0 m/s to 10.0 m/s in 3.0 seconds. What is the acceleration of the skater?
3. While traveling along the highway a driver slows from 24 m/s to 15 m/s in 12 seconds. What is the driver's acceleration? (Remember that a negative value indicates a slowing down or “deceleration.”)
4. A parachute on a dragster racingcar opens and changes the speed of the car from 85 m/s to 45 m/s in a period of 4.5 seconds. What is the acceleration of the car?
5. The fastest land mammal, the cheetah, can accelerate from 0 mi/hr to 70.0 mi/hr in 3.0 seconds. What is the acceleration of the cheetah?
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Skill Sheet 2 Acceleration Problems
6.
The Lamborghini Diablo sports car can accelerate from 0 km/hr to 99.2 km/hr in 4.0 seconds. What is the acceleration of this car?
7. Which has a greater acceleration, the cheetah or the Lamborghini Diablo? (To figure this out, you must remember that there are 1.6 km in one mile) Be sure to show your calculations.
2. Solving for other variables
Now that you have practiced a few acceleration problems, let's rearrange the acceleration formula so that we can solve for other variables such as for time and final speed.
Final speed = beginning speed + (acceleration × time)
Change in Time
=  Final speed – Beginning speed Acceleration
1. A cart rolling down an incline for 5.0 seconds has an acceleration of 4.0 m/s ^{2} . If the cart has a beginning speed of 2.0 m/s, what is its final speed?
2. A car is accelerated at a rate of 3.0 m/s ^{2} . If its original speed is 8.0 m/s, how many seconds will it take the car to reach a final speed of 25.0 m/s?
3. A car traveling at a speed of 30.0 m/s encounters an emergency and comes to a complete stop. How much time will it take for the car to stop if its rate of deceleration is 4.0 m/s ^{2} ?
4. If a car can go from 0.0 mi/hr to 60.0 mi/hr in 8.0 seconds, what would be its final speed after 5.0 seconds if its starting speed were 50.0 mph?
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Skill Sheet 3A
Newton's Second Law
As you work through the problems on this skill sheet, you will develop your understanding of Newton’s second law of motion and how it relates to Newton’s first law of motion. The second law states that the acceleration of an object is directly proportional to the force acting on the object and indirectly proportional to the mass of the object.
1. Newton’s first law of motion
Newton's first law of motion (the law of inertia) states that the motion of an object will continue until an outside force changes this motion. The amount of force needed to change the motion of an object depends on the amount of inertia an object has. The inertia of an object is related to its mass. You need more force to move or stop an object with a lot of mass or inertia, than you need for an object with less mass or inertia.
In Newton's second law, the acceleration of an object is directly related to the force on an object, and inversely related to the mass of an object. This is shown the the formula below.
acceleration
=  Force mass
Units for acceleration are m/sec ^{2} . Units for force the units are newtons (N). One newton is equivalent to 1 kgm/sec ^{2} . Units for mass are kilograms (kg). The equation for acceleration illustrates that acceleration is equal to the ratio of force to mass. This means that the force on an object causes it to accelerate, but the object’s mass is a measure of how much it will resist acceleration.
2. Three ways to write Newton’s second law of motion
1. In the formula for the second law of motion, acceleration equals force divided by mass. What does mass equal? What does force equal? Rearrange the equation to solve for mass.
What do you want to know? 
What do you know? 
The formula you will use 

acceleration (a) 
Force (F) and mass (m) 
acceleration 
=  Force mass 
mass (m) 
acceleration (a) and Force (F) 

Force (F) 
acceleration (a) and mass (m) 
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Skill Sheet 3A Newton's Second Law
3. Solving problems using Newton’s second law
Solve the following problems using Newton’s second law. The first two problems are done for you.
1. How much force is needed to accelerate a truck with a mass of 2,000 kg, at a rate of 3m/sec ^{2} ?
F
==
ma×
2,000 kg ×  3 m sec
2
=
6,000 kg
^{m}
Þ  = 6,000 N
sec
2
2. What is the mass of an object that requires 15 N to accelerate it at a rate of 1.5 m/sec ^{2} ?
m
F
==

a
15 N

1.5 m

sec ^{2}
15  kgm
2
=  sec
1.5 m

sec ^{2}
= 10 kg
3. What is the rate of acceleration of a 2,000kg truck if a force of 4,200 N is used to make it start moving forward?
4. What is the acceleration of a 0.3 kg ball that is hit with a force of 25 N?
5. How much force is needed to accelerate a 68 kgskier at a rate of 1.2 m/sec ^{2} ?
2
Skill Sheet 3A Newton's Second Law
6. What is the mass of an object that requires a force of 30 N to accelerate at a rate of 5 m/sec ^{2} ?
7. What is the force on a 1,000 kgelevator that is falling freely under the acceleration of gravity only?
8. What is the mass of an object that needs a force of 4,500 N to accelerate it at a rate of 5 m/sec ^{2} ?
9. What is the acceleration of a 6.4 kg bowling ball if a force of 12 N is applied to it?
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Skill Sheet 3B
Mass vs Weight
What is the difference between mass and weight? Why is it important to know these terms? This skill sheet will help you understand and correctly use mass and weight in problem solving.
mass
weight
Mass is a measure of the amount of matter in an object. Mass is not related to gravity. The mass of an object does not change when it is moved from one place to another in the universe. Mass is commonly measured in grams or kilograms.
Weight is a measure of the gravitational force between two objects. The weight of an object does change when the amount of gravitational force changes, as when an object is moved from Earth to the moon. Weight is commonly measured in newtons or pounds.
1. Why do mass and weight seem interchangeable?
People often talk about pounds and kilograms as if they are two units used to measure the same thing. They might say, for example, that a new baby weighs 8 pounds, or 3.63 kilograms. This statement implies that 8 pounds = 3.63 kilograms. This conversion makes sense as long as the baby stays on the surface of Earth.
On Earth’s surface, the force of gravity acting on one kilogram is 2.22 pounds. So, if an object has a mass of 3.63 kilograms, the force of gravity acting on that mass on Earth will be:
3.63 kg _{×}  2.22 pounds kg
= 8.06 pounds
On the moon’s surface, however, the force of gravity acting on one kilogram is about 0.370 pounds. The same newborn baby, if she traveled to the moon, would still have a mass of 3.63 kilograms, but her weight would be just 1.33 pounds.
1. What is the weight (in pounds) of a 7.0kilogram bowling ball on Earth’s surface?
2. What is the weight of a 7.0kilogram bowling ball on the surface of the moon?
3. What is the mass of a 7.0kilogram bowling ball on the surface of the moon?
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Skill Sheet 3B Mass vs Weight
2. What does it mean when we say that weight is a force?
In everyday language, we think of weight as a measure of “how heavy” something is. A 25pound toddler, for example, is a lot heavier to carry around than an 8pound newborn.
Force, on the other hand, is defined as a push, pull, or any action that has the ability to change motion. So what does pushing or pulling have to do with weight?
To understand why we say that weight is a force, it helps to look at the scales used to measure weight. Grocery stores often have scales in the produce section. To use the scale, you put your produce (a bunch of bananas, for example) in a basket hanging from a spring. The force of gravity acting on the bananas pulls on the spring, causing it to stretch. The dial at the top measures how much the spring stretches. The dial shows the amount of pulling force in pounds.
Bathroom scales work much the same way, except that when you stand on the scale, you compress (push) the spring instead of pulling on it.
Balances, which are used to measure mass, work differently. A balance is like a seesaw with a pan on each end. In one pan, you put the object to be measured. In the opposite pan you put objects whose masses are known. When the two pans are balanced, you know the two sides have equal mass.
1. Describe what would happen to the spring in a bathroom scale if you were on the moon when you stepped on it. How is this different from stepping on the scale on Earth?
2. Would a balance function correctly on the moon? Why or why not?
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Skill Sheet 3B Mass vs Weight
3.
What is free fall?
If you were too jump off of a 10meter diving board with a scale attached to your feet, what would
the scale read?
Until you hit the water, the scale would read zero pounds, even though you are very definitely still under the influence of gravity. It’s just that you and the scale are falling at the same time, so there is nothing for your feet to push against.
A similar situation occurs when a space shuttle orbits the earth. The space shuttle is not so far
away from Earth as to escape Earth’s gravity. To understand what is happening, think about throwing a baseball. The baseball curves toward Earth due to the influence of gravity. Now think about throwing the baseball a little farther, and a little farther. What would happen if you could throw the baseball so hard that it kept falling around Earth? Then it would be like a space shuttle in orbit. The astronauts and everything inside the space shuttle seem to be weightless because they are in constant free fall.
4. Try this!
Take a bathroom scale into an elevator. Step on the scale.
1. What happens to the reading on the scale as the elevator begins to move upward?
2. What happens to the reading on the scale when the elevator stops moving?
3. What happens to the reading on the scale when the elevator begins to move downward?
4. Why does your weight appear to change, even though you never left Earth’s gravity?
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Skill Sheet 3C
Momentum
This skill sheet will help you practice solving problems that involve momentum. The momentum of an object is equal to its mass times its velocity. When two objects collide, their momentum before the collision is equal to their momentum after the collision. This statement is called the law of conservation of momentum.
1. What is momentum?
A baseball bat and a ball are a pair of objects that collide with each other. Because of Newton’s third law of motion, we know that the force the bat has on a baseball is equal to, but opposite in direction to the force of the the ball on the bat. The bat and the baseball illustrate that action and reaction forces come in pairs.
Similarly, the momentum of the bat before it hits the ball will affect how much momentum the ball has after the bat and ball collide. Likewise, the momentum of the ball coming toward the bat, determines how much force you must use when swinging the bat to get a home run. What is momentum?
The momentum (kgm/sec) of an object is its mass (kg) multiplied by its velocity (m/sec). The equation for momentum where P equals momentum, m equals mass, and v equals velocity, is:
P = mv
P = mass in kilograms × speed in meters/sec
2. The law of conservation of momentum
The law of conservation of momentum states momentum is conserved. This means that the momentum of the bat and ball before the collision is equal to the momentum of the bat and ball after the collision:
In other words, for two objects, “1” and “2,” the momentum of object 1 is equal to the momentum of object 2. The two colliding objects represent a system. These formulas will help you complete this skill sheet.
momentum of object 1 = momentum of object 2
^{m} 1 ^{v} 1
= ^{m} 2 ^{v} 2
This formula can also be written as:
^{m} 1 ^{v} 1
–
^{m} 2 ^{v} 2
=
0
The momentum of a system before a collision = The momentum of a system after a collision
^{m} 1 ^{v} 1 initial
–
^{m} 2 ^{v} 2 (initial)
1
=
^{m} 1 ^{v} 1 (final)
–
^{m} 2 ^{v} 2 (final)
Skill Sheet 3C Momentum
3. Solving momentum problems
Find the momentum of the following objects. The first two problems have been done for you.
1. A 0.2kg steel ball that is rolling at a velocity of 3.0 m/sec.
momentum
m × v
==
0.2 kg ×  3 m sec
=
0.6 kg _{⋅} 
sec
m
2. A 0.005kg bullet with a velocity of 500 m/sec.
momentum
m × v
==
0.005
kg ×  500 m sec
=
2.5 kg _{⋅} 
sec
m
3. A 100kg football player, a fullback, moving at a velocity of 3.5 m/sec.
4. A 75kg football player, a defensive back, running at a velocity of 5 m/sec.
5. In questions 3 and 4 above, if the fullback collided with the defensiveback, who would get thrown backwards? Explain your answer.
6. If a ball is rolling at a velocity of 1.5 m/sec and has a momentum of 10.0 kgm/sec, what is the mass of the ball?
7. What is the velocity of an object that has a mass of 2.5 kg, and a momentum of 1,000 kgm/sec?
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Skill Sheet 3C Momentum
4. Problems involving the law of conservation of momentum
Use the law of conservation of momentum formula, m _{1} v _{1} = m _{2} v _{2} , to answer the following problems. The first problem has been done for you.
1. A 0.5kg ball with a velocity of 2.0 m/sec hits another ball with a mass of 1.0 kg. What is the velocity of the second ball after the collision?
(0.5 kg)
2.0

m
=
sec
2.0

m
(0.5 kg)
 =
sec
1.0 kg
(1.0 kg) v
(
2
)
1.0 m
 =
sec
^{v} 2
2. A 1.0kg ball with a velocity of 5 m/sec hits another 1.0kg ball that is stationary. What is the momentum of each ball before the collision?
3. In question 2 above, what is the total momentum before and after the collision?
4. A 20kg cart with a velocity of 20 m/s heading right collides with a 25kg cart with a velocity of 10 m/s heading left. What is momentum of each cart?
5. In question 4 above, what is the total momentum before and after the collision?
6. In question 5 above, if the speed of the 20kg cart is 10 m/sec after the collision, what is the speed of the 25kg cart after the collision?
7. In question 6 above, in which direction will each cart travel after the collision?
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Skill Sheet 3D
Applying Newton’s Laws of Motion
In this skill sheet you will use Newton’s laws of motion to solve application problems.
1. Reviewing Newton’s law of motion
In the table below, state each of Newton’s laws of motion. Use your own wording. For each law, describe an example of how each law is illustrated in real life.
Newton’s laws of motion 
Write the law here in your own words 
Example of the law 
The first law 

The second law 

The third law 
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Skill Sheet 3D Applying Newton’s Laws of Motion
2. Practice using Newton’s laws of motion
1. When Jane drives to work, she always places her purse on the passenger’s seat. By the time she gets to work, her purse has fallen on the floor in front of the passenger seat. One day, she asks you to explain why this happens in terms of physics. What do you say?
2. During your conversation with Jane, you mention that she could decrease her chance of injury in a car accident if she secured her wallet in the glove box and placed her purse and other loose items (such as compact disk cases and books) in the trunk. Why would this practice be safer? Why is it important to secure both small and large items? Explain your answer in terms of Newton’s first and second laws of motion.
3. You are waiting in line to use the diving board at your local pool. While watching people dive into the pool from the board, you realize that using a diving board to spring into the air before a dive is a good example of Newton’s third law of motion. In the space below, explain how a diving board illustrates Newton’s third law of motion.
4. You shopping cart has a mass of 65 kilograms. In order to accelerate the shopping cart down an aisle at 0.3 m/sec ^{2} , what force would you need to use or apply to the cart?
5. A small child has a wagon with a mass of 10 kilograms. The child pulls on the wagon with a force of 2 newtons. What is the acceleration of the wagon?
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Skill Sheet 4A
Mechanical Advantage
Mechanical advantage (MA) can be defined as the ratio of output force to input force for a machine In other words, MA tells you how many times a machine multiplies the force put into it. Some machines provide us with more output force than we applied to the machine—this means MA is greater than one. Some machines produce an output force smaller than our effort force, and MA is less than one. We choose the type of machine that will give us the appropriate MA for the work that needs to be performed.
1. What is mechanical advantage?
Mathematically, mechanical advantage may be expressed:
MA
MA
=
or
^{F}
o

^{F} i
=  output force input force
If we look at the force unit involved in the calculation, the newton (N), we see that it is present in both the numerator and the denominator of the fraction. Since units behave like numbers in mathematical calculations:
newtons

newtons
=
N

N
= 1
The units cancel each other, leaving the value for mechanical advantage as a unitless quantity.
2. Calculating mechanical advantage
The following set of problems are designed to provide you with practice using the mechanical advantage formula. The first one is done for you.
1. A force of 200 N is applied to a machine in order to lift a 1,000newton load. What is the mechanical advantage of the machine?
MA
=
output force

input force
1000 N
==
200 N
5
2. A machine is required to produce an output force of 600 N. If the machine has a mechanical advantage of 6, what input force must be applied to the machine?
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Skill Sheet 4A Mechanical Advantage
3.
An input force of 35 N is applied to a machine with a mechanical advantage of 0.75. What is the size of the load this machine could lift (how large is the output force)?
4. A machine is designed to push an object with a weight of 12 N. If the input force for the machine is set at 4 N, what is the mechanical advantage of the machine?
3. Looking ahead
Machines make work easier. Remember that, work is force times distance (W = F × d). The unit for work is the newtonmeter, which is often called the joule. Remembering that a joule is the same as a newtonmeter will help you cancel units as you work through the problems in this section.
We put work into a machine (work input), and the machine produces work for us in return (work output). The work output is never greater than the work input. In fact, work output is always less than work input because of friction. Friction reduces the amount of energy available to the machine. Less energy for the machine means less work done by the machine.
In spite of the loss of work due to friction, the machine still makes work easier because machines can provide mechanical advantage (MA).
Machines can multiply your input force (when MA is greater than 1) so that you can lift a very heavy object. Machines can also diminish your input force (when MA is less than 1) so you can handle a very delicate object that the force of your fingers could damage. Therefore, knowing a machine’s MA helps us choose a machine to perform a specific task.
Use the equations for work and mechanical advantage to solve the following problems. The first one is done for you.
1. A force of 30 N is applied to a machine through a distance of 10 meters. The machine is designed to lift an object to a height of 2 meters. If the total work output for the machine is 18 joules, what is the mechanical advantage of the machine?
input force = 30 N
output force= (work ÷ distance)= (18 j ÷ 2 m)= 9 N
MA
=
output force
 = = 0.3
9 N
30 N
input force
2. An input force of 50 N is applied through a distance of 10 meters to a machine with a mechanical advantage of 3. If the work output for the machine is 450 joules and this work is applied through a distance of 3 meters, what is the output force of the machine?
3. 200 joules of work is put into a machine over a distance of 20 meters. The machine does 150 joules of work as it lifts a load 10 meters high. What is the MA of the machine?
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Skill Sheet 4B
Gear Ratios
A gear ratio is used to figure out the number of turns each gear in a pair will make based on the number of teeth each gear has. In this skill sheet you will use gear ratios to solve problems that involve gears.
1. What is a gear ratio?
The workings of many machines involve rotating motion. Gears are important for the transfer to rotating motion from one place to another in a machine. For example, rotating engine parts in a car transfer motion to the wheels. The reason that gears are so useful has to do with the teeth around the edges of the gear. The teeth of two neighboring gears can lock together so that rotating motion is transferred from one place to another effectively.
Knowing something about gears allows you to build machines to do specific kinds of work. Clock makers utilize gear ratios to figure out how to get the rotating parts of the hour hand and the second hand to work.
To calculate the gear ratio for a pair of gears that are working together, you need to know the number of teeth on each gear. The formula below demonstrates how to calculate a gear ratio. Notice, that knowing the number of teeth on each gear allows you to figure out how many turns each gear will take. Why would this be important in figuring out how to design a clock that has a minute and hour hand?
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Skill Sheet 4B Gear Ratios
2. Twogear problems
Use the gear ratio formula to help you solve these problems. The first one is done for you. Remember that knowing the number of teeth for a pair of gears helps you figure out the number of turns.
1. A gear with 48 teeth is connected to a gear with 12 teeth. If the 48tooth gear makes one complete turn, how many times will the 12tooth gear turn?
 Turns of output gear? One turn for the input gear
=  48 input teeth 12 output teeth
Turns of output gear?
=  48 teeth × 1 turn = 4 turns 12 teeth
2. A 36tooth gear turns three times. It is connected to a 12tooth gear. How many times does the 12tooth gear turn?
3. A 12tooth gear is turned two times. How many times will the 24tooth gear that it is connected to turn?
4. Use the gear ratio formula to help you fill in the table below.
Table 1: Using the gear ratio to calculate number of turns
Input Gear 
Output 
Gear ratio 
How many turns does the output gear make if the input gear turns 3 times? 
How many turns does the input gear make if the output gear turns 2 times? 
(# of teeth) 
Gear 
(Input Gear: Output Gear) 

(# of teeth) 

24 
24 

36 
12 

24 
36 

48 
36 

24 
48 
2
Skill Sheet 4B Gear Ratios
3. Threegear problems
The problems in this section involve three gears stacked on top of each other. Once you have filled in Table 2, answer the question that follow. Use the gear ratio formula to help. Remember, knowing the gear ratios allows you to figure out the number of turns for a pair of gears.
Table 2: Set up for three gears
Set up 
Gears 
Number 
Ratio 
Ratio 2 
Total gear ratio 
of teeth 
(top gear: 
(middle gear: 
(Ratio 1 x Ratio 2) 

middle gear) 
bottom gear) 

1 
Top gear 
12 

Middle gear 
24 

Bottom gear 
36 

2 
Top gear 
24 

Middle gear 
36 

Bottom gear 
12 

3 
Top gear 
12 

Middle gear 
48 

Bottom gear 
24 

4 
Top gear 
24 

Middle gear 
48 

Bottom gear 
36 
3
Skill Sheet 4B Gear Ratios
1. As you turn the top gear to the right, what direction does the middle gear turn? What direction will the bottom gear turn?
2. How many times will you need to turn the top gear (input) in set up 1 to get the bottom gear (output) to turn once?
3. If you turn the top gear (input) in set up 2 two times, how many times will the bottom gear (output) turn?
4. How many times will the middle gear (output) in set up 3 turn if you turn the top gear (input) two times?
5. How many times will you need to turn the top gear (input) in set up 4 to get the bottom gear (output) to turn 4 times?
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Skill Sheet 5A
Work
In science, “work” is defined with an equation. Work is defined as the amount of force applied over distance. By measuring how much force you have used to move something over a certain distance, you can calculate how much work you have accomplished. This skill sheet reviews the work equation and provides problems for you to practice using this equation.
1. What is work?
As you recall, in science work is defined as force acting through a distance. That is, a force acts upon an object to move it a certain distance. However, to do work according to this definition, the force must be applied in the same direction as the movement. For example, if you lift a box off a table, the force applied is up, and the distance is also upward. This means that you have done work. However, if you lift the box off the table and then carry it to a bookshelf, only the lifting is work. Carrying the box is not work because the force on the box is up, and the distance is horizontal. However, you would be doing work if you pushed the box across the floor. Why?
Remember, the only time when work is done is when the force and the distance are in the same direction. So, in scientific terms, work is the force that is applied to an object in the same direction as the motion. The formula for work is:
Work (joules) = Force (newtons) × distance (meters)
W = Fd×
You should note that a joule of work is actually a newtonmeter; both units represent the same thing: work! In fact, one joule of work is defined as a force of one newton that is exerted on an object to it a distance of one meter.
1.0 joule = 1.0 N × 1.0 meter = 1.0 newtonmeter
2. Applying your knowledge
1. In your own words, define work in scientific terms. Be complete in your definition.
2. How are work, force, and distance related?
3. What are two different units that represent work?
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Skill Sheet 5A Work
3. Solving work problems
Solve the following problems using the formula for work. The first problem is done for you.
1. How much work is done on a 10 N block that is lifted 5 meters off the ground by a pulley?
work ==F × d
10 N × 5 meters = 50 newtonmeters = 50 joules
2. A woman lifts her 100newton child up 1 meter and carries her for a distance of 50 meters to her bedroom. How much work does the woman do?
3. You pull your sled through the snow a distance of 500 meters with a force of 200 newtons. How much work did you do?
4. An ant sits on the back of a mouse. The mouse carries the ant across the floor for a distance of 10 meters. Was there work done by the mouse? Explain.
5. You did 170 joules of work lifting a 140 N backpack. How high did you lift the backpack?
6. In problem 5, how much did the backpack weigh in pounds? (Hint: there are 4.448 newtons in one pound)
7. A crane does 62,500 joules of work to lift a boulder a distance of 25.0 meters. How much did the boulder weigh? (Hint: The weight of an object is considered to be a force.)
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Skill Sheet 5A Work
8. You lift a 45 N bag of mulch 1.2 meters and carry it a distance of 10 meters to the garden. How much work was done?
9. A 455N gymnast jumps upward a distance of 1.50 meters to reach the uneven parallel bars. How much work did she do before she even began her routine?
10. .It took a 500.0newton ballerina a force of 250 joules to lift herself upward through the air. She landed a total of 2.5 meters to the left after completing her jump. How high did she jump?
11. A peoplemoving conveyorbelt moves a 600newton person a distance of 100 meters through the airport. How much work was done?
12. A 600 N person lifts his 100 N carryon bag upward a distance of 1 meter. They travel 100 meters by riding on the “people mover.” How much work was done in this situation?
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Skill Sheet 5B
Power
In science, work is defined as the force needed to move an object a certain distance. Suppose that you and a friend needed to move two 500newton piles of potting soil to a garden that was 100 meters away. You accomplished this task in 10 minutes while your friend took 30 minutes. Both of you did the same amount of work (force × distance), but you did the work in a shorter amount of time. The amount of work done per unit of time is called power. In the example, you had more power than your friend. This skill sheet will give you practice with how to calculate power.
1. What is power?
Both you and your friend did the same amount of work.
W = Fd×
W = 500 N × 100 m = 50,000 joules
However, you had more power than your friend.
Power (watts)
=  Work (joules) Time (seconds)
Let’s do the math to see how this is possible.
Step one: Convert minutes to seconds.
10 minutes _{×}  60 minute seconds _{=} _{6}_{0}_{0} _{s}_{e}_{c}_{o}_{n}_{d}_{s} _{(}_{Y}_{o}_{u}_{)}
30 minutes _{×}  60 minute seconds _{=} _{1}_{,} _{8}_{0}_{0} _{s}_{e}_{c}_{o}_{n}_{d}_{s} _{(}_{F}_{r}_{i}_{e}_{n}_{d}_{)}
Step two: Find power.
 50,000 joules = 83.3 watts (You) 600 seconds
 50,000 joules = 27.7 watts (Friend) 1, 800 seconds
As you can see, the same amount of work that is done in less time produces more power. You are familiar with the word watt from a light bulb. It is now clear to you why a 100watt bulb is more powerful than a 40watt bulb. So, now it is time for you to practice solving some problems involving work and power.
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Skill Sheet 5B Power
2. Solving problems
Solve the following problems using the power and work equations. The first problem is done for you.
1. A motor does 5,000 joules of work in 20 seconds. What is the power of the motor?
power
== work
time

5000 joules

20 sec
=  250 joules = 250 watts sec
2. A machine does 1,500 joules of work in 30 seconds. What is the power of this machine?
3. A sleigh weighs 2,000 N and is pulled by a horse a distance of 1.0 kilometer (that’s 1,000 meters) in 45 minutes. What is the power of the horse? (Hint: Convert time to seconds.)
4. A wagon weighs 1,800 N and is pulled by a horse at a speed of 0.40 meters/second. What is the power of this horse?
5. Suppose a force of 100 N is used to push an object a distance of 5 meters in 15 seconds. Find the work done and the power for this situation.
6. A force of 100 N is used to move an object a distance of 15 meters with a power of 25 watts. Find the work done and the time it takes to do the work.
7. If a small machine does 2,500 joules of work on an object to move it a distance of 100 meters in 10 seconds, what is the force needed to do the work? What is the power of the machine doing the work?
8. A machine uses a force of 200 N to do 20,000 joules of work in 20 seconds. Find the distance the object moved and the power of the machine. (Hint: A joule is the same as a Newtonmeter.)
9. A machine that uses 200 watts of power moves an object a distance of 15 meters in 25 seconds. Find the force needed and the work done by this machine.
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Skill Sheet 5C
Potential and Kinetic Energy
In this skill sheet, you will review the forms of energy and formulas for two kinds of energy potential and kinetic. After having worked through this skill sheet, calculating the amount of kinetic or potential energy for an object will be easy!
1. Forms of energy
Energy can be used or stored. When talking about motion, energy that is stored is called potential energy. Energy that is used when an object is moving is called kinetic energy. Other forms of energy include radiant energy from the sun, chemical energy from the food you eat, and electrical energy from the outlets in your home. Energy is measured in joules or newtonmeters.
1 joule
=
1 N
1 kg _{⋅}  m ^{2} sec ^{2}
=
=
1 kg _{⋅} 
sec ^{2}
m
1 N ⋅ m
2. Potential energy
The word potential means that something is capable of becoming active. Potential energy sometimes is referred to as stored energy. This type of energy often comes from the position of an object relative to the Earth. A diver on the high dive has more energy than someone who dives into the pool from the low dive.
The formula to calculate the potential energy of an object is the mass of the object times the acceleration of gravity times its height of the object.
E _{p} = mgh
The mass of the object times the acceleration of gravity (g) is the same as the weight of the object in newtons. The acceleration of gravity is equal to 9.8 m/sec ^{2} .
mass of the object (kilograms) _{×}  9.8 m
2
sec
= weight of the object (newtons)
3. Kinetic energy
The second category of energy is kinetic energy, the energy of motion. Kinetic energy depends on the mass of the object as well as the speed of that object. Just think of a large object moving at a very high speed. You would say that the object has a lot of energy. Since the object is moving, it has kinetic energy. The formula for kinetic energy is:
^{E} k
= mv 1
2
2
To do this calculation you need to square the velocity value. Next, multiply by the mass, and then, divide by 2.
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Skill Sheet 5C Potential and Kinetic Energy
4. Solving problems
Now it's time for you to practice calculating potential and kinetic energy. Make sure to show your work with all units present in your calculations as well as your answer. The first two problems have been done for you.
1. A 50 kg boy and his 100 kg father went jogging. Both ran at a rate of 5 m/s. Who had more kinetic energy? Show your work and explain.
Although the boy and his father were running at the same speed, the father has more kinetic energy because he has more mass. The kinetic energy of the boy:
1
(50 kg)
2
5 m ^{2}

sec
The kinetic energy of the father:
1
(100 kg)
2
5 m ^{2}

sec
= 625 kg _{⋅}  m ^{2}
sec ^{2}
= 1, 250 kg _{⋅}  m ^{2} sec ^{2}
2. What is the potential energy of a 10 N book that is placed on a shelf that is 2.5 meters high?
The book’s weight (10 newtons) is equal to its mass times the acceleration of gravity. Therefore, you can easily use this value in the potential energy formula:
potential energy ==mgh
(10 N)(2.5 m)
= 25 N ⋅ m
3. Determine the amount of potential energy of a 5 N book that is moved to 3 different shelves on a bookcase. The height of each shelf is 1.0 meter, 1.5 meters, and 2.0 meters.
4. Two objects were lifted by a machine. One object had a mass of 2 kg, and was lifted at a speed of 2m/s. The other had a mass of 4 kg and was lifted at a rate of 3 m/s. Which object had more kinetic energy while it was being lifted? Show all calculations.
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Skill Sheet 5C Potential and Kinetic Energy
5. In problem 4, which object had more potential energy when it was lifted a distance of 10 meters? Show your calculation. (Remember that gravity = 9.8 m/s ^{2} )
6. You are on roller blades on top of a large hill. Your potential energy is equal to 1,000 joules. The last time you checked your mass was 60 kg.
a. What is your weight in newtons?
b. What is the height of the hill?
c. If you start skating down this hill, your potential energy will be converted to kinetic energy. At the bottom of the hill, your kinetic energy will be equal to your potential energy at the top. What will be your speed at the bottom of the hill?
7. Answer the following:
a. A 1 kg ball is thrown into the air with an initial velocity of 30 m/s. How much kinetic energy does the ball have?
b. How much potential energy does the ball have when it reaches the top of its ascent?
c. How high into the air did the ball travel?
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Skill Sheet 5C Potential and Kinetic Energy
8.
What is the potential energy of a 3 kgball that is on the ground?
9. What is the kinetic energy of a 2,000 kg boat moving at 5 m/s?
10. What is the velocity of an 500 kg elevator that has 4000 joules of energy?
11. What is the mass of an object that creates 33, 750 joules of energy by traveling at 30 m/s?
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Skill Sheet 7A
Using an Electric Meter
What do you measure in a circuit and how do you measure it? This skill sheet gives you useful tips to help you use an electric meter and understand electrical measurements.
1. The digital multimeter
Most people who work with electric circuits use a digital multimeter to measure electrical quantities. These measurements help them analyze circuits. Most multimeters measure voltage, current, and resistance. A typical multimeter is shown below:
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Skill Sheet 7A Using an Electric Meter
2. Using the digital multimeter
This table summarizes how to use and interpret any digital meter in a battery circuit. Note: A component is any part of a circuit, such as a battery, a bulb, or a wire.
Measuring Voltage 
Measuring Current 
Measuring Resistance 
Circuit is ON 
Circuit is ON 
Circuit is OFF 
Turn meter dial to voltage, 
Turn meter dial to current, 
Turn meter dial to resistance, labeled Ω 



Connect leads to meter following meter instructions 
Connect leads to meter following meter instructions 
Connect leads to meter following meter instructions 
Place leads at each end of component (leads are ACROSS the component) 
Break circuit and place leads on each side of the break (meter is IN the circuit) 
Place leads at each end of component (leads are ACROSS the component) 
Measurement in VOLTS (V) 
Measurement in AMPS (A) 
Measurement in OHMS (Ω ) 
Battery measurement shows relative energy provided 
Measurement shows the value of current at the point where meter is placed 
Measurement shows the resistance of the component 
Component measurement shows relative energy used by that component 
Current is the flow of charge through the wire 
When the resistance is too high, the display shows OL (overload) or ∝ (infinity) 



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Skill Sheet 7A Using an Electric Meter
3. Meter practice
Build a series circuit with 2 batteries and 2 bulbs.
1. Measure and record voltage across each battery:
2. Measure and record voltage across each bulb:
3. Measure and record voltage across both batteries:
4. Draw a circuit diagram or sketch that shows all the posts in the circuit (posts are where wires and holders connect together).
5. Break the circuit at one post. Measure current and record the value below. Repeat until you have measured current at every post.
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Skill Sheet 7A Using an Electric Meter
6.
Create a set of instructions on how to use the meter to do a task. Find someone unfamiliar with the meter. See if they can follow your instructions.
7. A fuse breaks a circuit when current is too high. A fuse must be replaced when it breaks a circuit. Explain how measuring the resistance of a fuse can tell you if it is defective.
8. You suspect that a wire is defective but can't see a break in it. Explain how measuring the resistance of the wire can tell you if it has a break.
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Skill Sheet 7B
Voltage, Current, and Resistance
This skill sheet reviews the role of voltage, current, and resistance in an electrical circuit, and provides practice in calculating these values using Ohm’s Law. Understanding these three terms will greatly enhance your understanding of electricity. Let’s begin our review!
1. What is voltage?
You know that water will flow from a higher tank through a hose into a lower tank. The water in the higher tank has greater potential energy than the water in the lower tank. A similar thing happens with the flow of charges in an electrical circuit.
Charges flow in a circuit when there is a difference in energy level from one end of the battery (or any other energy source) to the other. This energy difference is measured in volts. The energy difference causes the charges to move from a higher to a lower voltage in a closed circuit.
Think of voltage as the amount of “push” the electrical source supplies to the circuit. A meter is used to measure the amount of energy difference or “push” in a circuit. The meter reads the voltage difference (in volts) between the positive and the negative ends of the power source (the battery). This voltage difference supplies the energy to make charges flow in a circuit.
What is the difference between placing a 1.5volt battery in a circuit and a placing a 9volt battery in a circuit?
2. What is current?
Current describes the flow of electric charges. Current is the actual measure of how many charges are flowing through the circuit in a certain amount of time. Current is measured in units called amperes.
Just as the rate of water flowing out of a faucet can be fast or slow, electrical current can move at different rates. The type, length, and thickness of wire all effect how much current flows in a circuit. Resistors slow the flow of current. Adding voltage causes the current to speed up.
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Skill Sheet 7B Voltage, Current, and Resistance
1.
What could you do to a closed circuit consisting of a battery, a light bulb, and a switch that would increase the amount of current flow? Explain your answer.
2. What could you do to a closed circuit consisting of a battery, a light bulb, and a switch that would decrease the amount of current flow? Explain your answer.
3. What is resistance?
Resistance is the measure of how easily charges flow through a circuit. High resistance means it is difficult for current to flow. Low resistance means it is easy for current to flow. Electrical resistance is measured in units called ohms (abbreviated with the symbol Ω ).
Resistors are items that reduce the flow of charge in a circuit. They act like “speed bumps” in a circuit. A light bulb is an example of a resistor.
Describe one thing that you could do to the wire used in a circuit to decrease the amount of resistance presented by the wire.
4. How are voltage, current, and resistance related?
When the voltage (push) increases, the current (flow of charges) will also increase, and when the voltage decreases, the current likewise decreases. These two variables, voltage and current, are said to be directly proportional.
When the resistance in an electrical circuit increases, the flow of charges (current) decreases. These two variables, resistance and current, are said to be inversely proportional. When one goes up, the other goes down, and vice versa.
The law that relates these three variables is called Ohm’s Law. The formula is:
Current (amps) I
=  V Voltage (volts)
R Resistance (ohms, Ω )
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Skill Sheet 7B Voltage, Current, and Resistance
In your own words, state the relationship between resistance and current, as well as the relationship between voltage and current.
5. Solving problems
Now you will have the opportunity to demonstrate your understanding of the relationship between current, voltage and resistance. Answer each of the following questions and show your work. The first problem is done for you.
1. In a circuit, how many amps of current flow through a resistor such as a 6ohm light bulb when using four 1.5volt batteries as an energy supply?
Current
=
× 1.5 volts 6 ohms

4
6
6
volts
= 
0hms
Current = 1 amp
2. How many amps of current flow through a circuit that includes a 9volt battery and a bulb with a resistance of 6 ohms?
3. How many amps of current flow through a circuit that includes a 9volt battery and a bulb with a resistance of 12 ohms?
4. How much voltage would be necessary to generate 10 amps of current in a circuit that has 5 ohms of resistance?
5. How many ohms of resistance must be present in a circuit that has 120 volts and a current flow equal to 10 amps?
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Skill Sheet 8A
Ohm's Law
Building and testing series circuits has helped you understand the relationship between voltage, resistance, and current. You know that if the voltage (energy) in a circuit increases, so does the current (flow of charges). You also understand that if the resistance increases, the current flow decreases. A German physicist, Georg S. Ohm, developed this mathematical relationship, which is present in most circuits. This relationship is known as Ohm's law:
Current (amps) I
=  V Voltage (volts)
R Resistance (ohms, Ω )
This skill sheet will provide you with an opportunity to test your knowledge of Ohm's law.
1. Using Ohm’s Law to understand circuits
To work through this skill sheet, you will need the symbols used to depict circuits in diagrams. The symbols that are most commonly used for circuit diagrams are provided to the right.
All of the circuits discussed in this skill sheet are series circuits. This means the current has only one path through the circuit. Later you will learn about another kind of circuit in which the current has more than one possible path. This type of circuit is called a parallel circuit.
Note: For convenience, the symbol for battery is used to represent one or more batteries. The batteries you have used to build circuits are
1.5 volt batteries. Dividing the total voltage by 1.5 volts will tell you
the number of batteries present in the circuit.
For example, the total voltage in the second diagram on the right is 6 volts. Divide 6 volts by 1.5 volts to find the number of batteries in the circuit. 6 ÷ 1.5 = 4. There are four batteries in the circuit.
2. Solving problems
In this section, you will find some problems based on diagrams and others without diagrams. In all cases, you should show your work.
1. If a toaster produces 12 ohms of resistance in a 120volt circuit, what is the amount of current in the circuit?
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Skill Sheet 8A Ohm's Law
2.
You have a large flashlight that takes 4 Dcell batteries. If the current in the flashlight is 2 amps, what is the resistance of the light bulb? (Hint: A Dcell battery has 1.5 volts.)
3. What is the voltage of a circuit with 15 amps of current and toaster with 8 ohms of resistance?
4. Use the diagram below to answer the following problems.
a. What is the total voltage in each circuit?
b. How much current would be measured in each circuit if the light bulb has a resistance of 6 ohms?
c. How much current would be measured in each circuit if the light bulb has a resistance of 12 ohms?
d. What would happen to the brightness of the bulb if voltage is increased?
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Skill Sheet 8A Ohm's Law
5. Use the diagram below to answer the following problems.
a. How much current would be measured in each circuit if each light bulb has a resistance of 6 ohms?
b. How much current would be measured in each circuit if each light bulb has a resistance of 12 ohms?
c. What happens to the brightness of each bulb as you add bulbs to a series circuit? (Hint:
Compare these diagrams to the diagrams in question 4 above.)
6. What happens to the amount of current in a series circuit as the number of batteries increases?
7. What happens to the amount of current in a series circuit as the number of bulbs increases?
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Skill Sheet 8B
Electrical Power
Which appliance in your kitchen uses the most power? The equation for electrical power is the tool you can use to answer this question. This skill sheet will help you sharpen your skills at calculating electrical power and analyzing the voltage, current, and power associated with electric circuits.
1. What is electrical power?
Power is the rate at which work is performed. Power tells us how quickly work is being done or how much energy is being used per unit time. When you work with machines, power is calculated by dividing work by the amount of time it takes to perform the work. For electrical systems, the equation for power is:
Power = Voltage × Current
P = VI×
where P = Power, V = Voltage and I = Current. This equation allows us to assess the rate at which an appliance or other device is using energy or performing work.
The graphic below shows you why power is called a rate. The unit for voltage is joules per coulomb. The units for current is coulombs per second. When you multiply voltage times current, the coulombs cancel so that the unit for power is joules per second.
2. The unit for electrical power
One joule per second is equal to one watt of power. The watt (W) is a familiar unit of power for most people. You can look at any appliance and see how many watts of power it uses. For example, the heating element on a coffee maker uses 1,050 watts of power. We can also say that the coffee maker has a power rating of 1,050 watts.
One watt of power represents one joule of energy being used per second of time.
=
 joules
Power
sec
1 watt
=
 1 joule sec
The more watts of power a circuit or appliance has, the more energy it uses or the more work it can do per second of time. A 1,500W microwave oven can perform the same amount of work as a 900W microwave; however, the rate at which the 1,500W microwave performs the work is faster. Also, the amount of energy used per second of time is greater also (1,500 J in one second compared to 900 J in one second). As a result, a highwattage appliance is more expensive to operate.
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Skill Sheet 8B Electrical Power
3. Practice problems
Complete the following problems. Be sure to show your work. The first problem has been done for you.
1. A toaster oven has a power rating of 750 W. If the oven heats a piece of pizza for 360 seconds, how many joules of energy have been used by the toaster oven?
Power
750 W
=  joules of energy time
=  joules of energy 360 sec
750 W × 360 sec = joules of energy = 270,000 joules
2. You use your 60watt DVD player to watch your favorite movie. If the player uses 324,000 joules of energy while playing the film, what is the running time of the movie?
3. The current flowing through an electrical circuit is 9 amps. If the voltage in the same circuit is 120 V, what is the power of the circuit?
4. A 7200 W electric clothes dryer operates with a current of 30 amps. What is the voltage associated with this circuit?
5. A CD player uses 85 joules of energy per second. If the voltage in the CD player is 170 V, what amount of current is required for the operation of player?
6. A girl wants to build a radio that operates using 9volt batteries. If the girl wishes the radio to function with 75 W of power, with what amount of current will she have to design her circuits?
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Skill Sheet 8B Electrical Power
7. Your stereo has a power rating of 150 watts. Your friend buys a stereo with a power rating of 300 watts. If you both play your stereo for one hour, who will spend more money to listen to their music? Explain your answer.
8. The voltage supplied to household circuits is generally 120 V. However, individual circuits (circuits supplying the kitchen as opposed to the dining room, for example) differ in the amount of current they carry. What does that tell you about the amount of power operating in different household circuits? Why do you think household circuits are designed in this way?
4. Comparing electrical power and mechanical power
Power is a term that is used when you talk about machines that use electricity, like blenders, and mechanical machines, like pulleys. Look up the equation for mechanical power. Use this equation to answer the following questions.
1. Power can be calculated for electrical systems and mechanical systems. Write the equation for mechanical power. What are the units for mechanical power?
2. Compare the equations for electrical power and mechanical power. How are they alike and different?
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Skill Sheet 8C
Electrical Power and Ohm's Law
In this skill sheet you will review the relationship between electrical power and Ohm’s law. As you work through the problems, you will practice calculating the power used by common appliances in your home.
1. How do you calculate electrical power?
During everyday life we hear the word watt mentioned in reference to things like light bulbs and electric bills. The watt is the unit that describes how much power is used when electricity flows. Therefore, the definition of power is the “rate at which energy is flowing.” And since energy is measured in joules, power is measured in joules per second. In fact, one joule per second is equal to one watt.
You may also have heard of the word kilowatt. A kilowatt is 1,000 watts or 1,000 joules of energy flowing in one second. This term kilowatt is most often used with electrical use in houses and other large facilities. And on an electric bill you may have noticed the term kilowatthour. A kilowatthour means that one kilowatt of power has been used for one hour.
We can calculate the amount of electrical power by an appliance or other electrical component by multiplying the voltage by the current.
Voltage × Current = Power, or P = VI
2. Solving problems
Solve the following problems using the power equation and Ohm’s law.
Current (amps)
=  Voltage (volts) Resistance (ohms)
Remember, power is measured in watts.
1. Your hair dryer has a power rating of 1,200 watts.
a. How many kilowatts is this?
b. If the hair dryer is used for 20 minutes per day, how many kilowatthours (kWh) per day is this? (Hint: convert 20 minutes to hours.)
c. Find the kilowatthours used by the hair dryer each month (assume 30 days/month).
d. If your town charges $0.15/kWh, what is the cost to use the hair dryer per month?
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Skill Sheet 8C Electrical Power and Ohm's Law
2.
Using the formula for power, calculate the amount of current through a 75watt light bulb that is connected to a 120volt circuit in your home.
3. What is the power rating of a home appliance (in kilowatts) that uses 8 amps of current when plugged into a 120volt outlet.
4. The following questions refer to the diagram.
a. What is the total voltage for the circuit?
b. What is the total resistance for the circuit in ohms (Ω)?
c. What is the current that will flow through the circuit?
d. What is the power (in watts) for this circuit?
5. A toaster is plugged into a 120volt household circuit. It draws 5 amps of current.
a. What is the resistance of the toaster in ohms (Ω)?
b. What is the power (in watts) of the toaster? What is this power in kilowatts?
6. A clothes dryer in a home has a power of 4,500 watts and runs on a special 220volt household
circuit.
a. What is the current traveling through the dryer?
b. What is the resistance of the dryer in ohms (Ω )?
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Skill Sheet 8C Electrical Power and Ohm's Law
7. A hair dryer is connected to a 120volt household circuit. The current through the dryer is 10 amps.
a. What is the resistance of the hair dryer?
b. What is the power rating (in kilowatts) of the dryer?
c. If the dryer is used for 30 minutes per day, how many kilowatthours are used by the dryer each day?
d. How many kilowatthours are used per month? (Assume 1 month = 30 days)
e. If the town charges 14 cents per kWh, what is the cost to run the hair dryer per month?
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Skill Sheet 9A
Parallel and Series Circuits
There are two major types of electrical circuits: series and parallel. In a series circuit, current follows only one path. In a parallel circuit, the current has two or more possible paths. In both types of circuits, the current travels from the positive end of the battery toward the negative end. The amount of energy used by a circuit (series or parallel) must equal the energy supplied by the battery. In this way, electrical circuits follow the law of conservation of energy. Understanding these facts will help you solve problems that deal with series and parallel circuits.
1. Solving series circuit problems
It is now time for you to test your knowledge of series and parallel circuits by answering the questions below. You will have to use Ohm's law to solve many of the problems, so remember that:
Current (amps)
=  Voltage (volts) Resistance (ohms)
Some questions ask you to calculate a voltage drop. We often say that each resistor creates a separate voltage drop. As current flows along a series circuit, each resistor uses up some energy. As a result, the voltage gets lower after each resistor. If you know the current in the circuit and the resistance of a particular resistor, you can calculate the voltage drop using Ohm’s law.
Voltage drop (volts) = Current (amps) × Resistance of one resistor (ohms)
1. Use the series circuit pictured right to answer questions (a) (e).
a. What is the total voltage of the circuit?
b. What is the total resistance of the circuit?
c. What is the current flowing through the circuit?
d. What is the voltage drop across each light bulb? (Remember that voltage drop is calculated by multiplying current in the circuit by the resistance of a particular resistor: V = IR.)
e.
Draw the path of the current flow on the diagram.
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Skill Sheet 9A Parallel and Series Circuits
2. Use the series circuit pictured right to answer questions (a)  (c). Consider each resistor equal to all others.
a. What is the resistance of each resistor?
b. What is the voltage drop across each resistor?
c. On the diagram, show the amount of voltage in the circuit before and after each resistor.
3. Use the series circuit pictured right to answer questions (a)  (d).
a. What is the resistance of the circuit?
b. What is the current flowing through the circuit?
c. What is the voltage drop across each resistor?
d. On the diagram, show the amount of voltage in the circuit before and after each resistor.
2. Solving parallel circuit problems
A parallel circuit has at least one point where the circuit divides, creating more than one path for current. Each path is called a branch. The current through a branch is called branch current. Remember that if current flows into a branch in a circuit, the same amount of current must flow out again, This rule is known as Kirchoff’s current law.
For example, suppose you have three light bulbs connected in parallel, and each has a current of 1 amp. The battery must supply 3 amps since each bulb draws 1 amp. Before the first branch point, 3 amps are flowing. One amp goes down the first branch to the first bulb, and 2 amps flow on to supply the next two bulbs.
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Skill Sheet 9A Parallel and Series Circuits
1. Use the parallel circuit pictured right to answer questions (a)  (c).
a. What is the total voltage for the circuit?
b. What is the current flow through each branch?
c. What is the voltage in each branch?
2. Compare the circuits in Part 1, question 1 and Part 2, question 1. What is the current flow through each bulb in the series circuit vs. the current flow through each bulb in the parallel circuit? Which bulbs would be brighter? Explain your reasoning.
3. Use the parallel circuit pictured right to answer questions (a)  (d).
a. What is the voltage through each branch?
b. What is the current flow through each branch?
c. What is the power of each resistor? (Remember that power is current multiplied by voltage.)
d. What is the relationship between current and power?
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Skill Sheet 9B
Open and Closed Circuits
As you know, a circuit is a path for electric current. Electric current can move only through a closed circuit. A closed circuit provides a complete path with no breaks so that the current may travel out of and back to the power source. For this reason, the closed circuit is also known as a complete circuit.
An open circuit, on the other hand, has a break in it. No current flows and we say that the circuit is incomplete.
A familiar example of a closed and open circuit occurs when you turn a light switch on and off. When the switch is turned on, it closes the circuit and the lamp lights up. When the switch is turned off, the circuit is opened, and, therefore, the lamp turns off.
Open and closed circuits can be found in both series and parallel circuits. However, in a series circuit, it takes only one break in the current’s path to open the entire circuit. This is because there is only one path for the current to flow. However, since a parallel circuit has more than one path for the electric current, a break in one path of the circuit may open that path but not the others.
Solving problems
It is now time for you to test your knowledge of open and closed circuits in both series and parallel. You will use the circuit diagrams pictured below to answer the questions. You may wish to write on the diagrams in order to keep track where the current is flowing. As a result, each diagram is repeated several times.
1. Which devices (A, B, C, or D) in the circuit pictured below will be on when the following conditions are met? For your answer, give the letter of the device or devices.
a. Switch 3 is open, and all other switches are closed.
b. Switch 2 is open, and all other switches are closed.
c. Switch 4 is open, and all other switches are closed.
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Skill Sheet 9B Open and Closed Circuits
d. Switch 1 is open, and all other switches are closed.
e. Bulb C blows out, and all switches are closed.
f. Bulb A blows out, and all switches are closed.
.
g. Switches 2 and 4 are open, and switches 1 and 3 are closed.
h. Switches 2 and 3 are open, and switches 1 and 4 are closed.
.
i. Switches 2, 3, and 4 are open, and switch 1 is closed.
j. Switches 1 and 2 are open, and switches 3 and 4 are closed.
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Skill Sheet 9B Open and Closed Circuits
2. Which of the devices (AG) in the circuit below will be on when the following conditions are met? For your answer, give the letter of the device or devices.
a. Switch 5 is open, and all other switches are closed.
b. Switch 6 is open, and all others are closed.
c. Switch 7 is open, and all others are closed.
.
d. Switch 4 is open, and all others are closed.
e. Switch 3 is open, and all others are closed.
f. Switch 2 is open, and all others are closed.
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Skill Sheet 9B Open and Closed Circuits
g. Switch 1 is open, and all others are closed.
h. Switches 2 and 4 are open, and all others are closed.
i. Switches 4 and 6 are open, and all others are closed.
j. Switches 4 and 7 are open, and all others are closed.
k. Switches 5 and 7 are open, and all others are closed.
l. Switches 2 and 3 are open, and all others are closed.
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Skill Sheet 9B Open and Closed Circuits
.
m.Bulb D blows out with all switches closed.
n. Bulbs A and B blow out with all switches closed.
o. Bulbs A and D blow out with all switches closed.
3. Use arrows to draw the direction of the current in each of the circuits below. Make sure to show current direction in all paths of the circuits within each diagram.
4. How many possible paths are there in circuit diagrams in questions (1) and (2)?
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Skill Sheet 9B Open and Closed Circuits
5. Draw a circuit of your own. Use one battery, show at least 4 devices (bulbs and bells), and use both parallel and series branches with switches in each. Finally, use arrows to show the direction of the current in all parts of your circuit.
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Skill Sheet 9C
Electric Circuit Project
The Steady Hand Game
Do you have a steady hand? This easytobuild game challenges your manual dexterity. Can you move a small loop of wire over a complicated maze without tripping the light bulb? Try it and see!
1. Gather these materials
• Electric Circuits Set: electricity table, one battery with holder, one light bulb with holder, one long connecting wire (brown)
• 1 meter of 12gauge copper wire. Wire must not have an insulated coating. This wire can be purchased where picture hanging supplies are sold.
• 50 centimeterlong piece of 16gauge insulated copper wire. This wire can be purchased at a hardware store.
• Electrical tape
• Wire stripper tool
• Permanentink marking pen
• Metric ruler or measuring tape
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Skill Sheet 9C Electric Circuit Project
2. How to build the game
1. Place the battery, light bulb, and long connecting wire on the electricity table as shown in the diagram on the previous page.
2. Cut a 20centimeter piece from one end of the 1 meterlong piece of 12gauge copper wire.
3. Bend one end of the 20cm piece in to a loop with a diameter no larger than a dime. The smaller the loop, the more challenging the game! Twist the wire to secure the loop. You have just constructed the wand for your game board.
4. Strip 2 cm of plastic coating from each end of the 50 cm length of 16 gauge wire. (Your teacher may help with this part).
5. Wrap one end of the exposed wire around the base of your wand and secure with electrical
tape.
6. Wrap the other end of the exposed copper wire around the right front corner post of the electricity table. (The light bulb wire should also be connected to this post). Secure with electrical tape.
7. Measure 15 cm in from each end of your remaining 80 cm piece of 12 gauge copper wire. Mark the two spots with permanent ink. DO NOT cut the wire.
8. Make a 90° bend in the wire at each spot so that the wire is shaped like a wide, upsidedown
U.
9. Bend the long horizontal section of the wire into a series of hills and valleys (see illustration). Adjust the bends until the two 15 cm “legs” of the wire are 23 cm apart.
10. Place one of the 15centimeter “legs” alongside the left, rear post of the electricity grid. The long connecting wire should be attached to this post. Secure the leg with electrical tape.
11. Slide the loop of your wand over the other leg of the 12gauge wire.
12. Use electrical tape to secure this leg to the right, rear post of the electricity grid. Make sure that the tape covers the entire post.
13. Make sure that the loop in the wand will slide down the post. The loop should be placed in this position when the game is not in use.
14. Now you are ready to play! Using one hand, move the loop in the wand over the hills and valleys—but don’t let the loop touch the copper wire! Try to make it all the way across without lighting the bulb.
Variation: Inexpensive buzzers can be purchased at electronic or hobby stores and placed in the circuit alongside the bulb.
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Skill Sheet 11
Harmonic Motion
A number of common objects exhibit harmonic motion. A swing, a string on a guitar, sound, and light all move in a harmonic or wave pattern. We can describe the motion of these objects with special terms like period, frequency, amplitude, and hertz. In this skill sheet, you will practice using these terms as you work through the activities, questions, and problems.
1. Reviewing terms
The diagram to the right shows the period of a pendulum. As the ball on the string is pulled to one side and then let go, the ball moves to the side opposite the starting place and then returns to the start. This entire motion equals one cycle. The time it take to move through one cycle is equal to one period of the pendulum.
As you can see in the diagram, the ball and string always pass through a center point. The distance to which the ball and string move away from this center point is call the amplitude. For pendulums, amplitude is measured in degrees. For other kinds of waves, amplitude is measured in units of length like centimeters or meters.
Frequency is a term that refers to how many cycles can occur in one second. For example, the frequency of the sound wave that corresponds to the musical note “A” is 440 cycles per second or 440 hertz. The unit hertz (Hz) is defined as the number of cycles per second.
The terms period and frequency are related by the following equation.
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Skill Sheet 11 Harmonic Motion
2. Questions and practice problems
1. You decide to describe the harmonic motion of a swing. You find out that it take 2 seconds for the swing to complete one cycle. The swing passes through 48 degrees as it goes from highto high point in its motion (passing through center).
a. What is the period of the swing?
b. What is the frequency of the swing in hertz?
c. What is the amplitude of the swing?
2. If you let the swing’s motion continue on its own, what would happen to its amplitude? Why?
3. Use the graphic to answer the following
questions.
a. What is the amplitude of the wave?
b. How many wavelengths are featured in the graphic? In your response, demonstrate that you understand how to identify one wavelength.
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Skill Sheet 11 Harmonic Motion
4. The table below lists data from a pendulum experiment. Use the table to help you answer the questions that follow.
Trial number 
Length of string 
Mass of pendulum 
Amplitude of 
(cm) 
(g) 
pendulum 

(degrees) 

1 
10 
5 
30 
2 
10 
10 
40 
3 
20 
5 
30 
4 
20 
10 
40 
5 
30 
5 
30 
6 
30 
10 
40 
a. Which of the three variables (length of string, mass of the pendulum, and amplitude) affects the period of the pendulum the most?
b. For which of the six trials would the pendulum be the slowest? Explain your answer.
c. For which of the six trials would the pendulum be the fastest? Explain your answer.
d. Does the relationship between the mass and period of a pendulum support Newton’s second law of motion? Explain your answer.
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Skill Sheet 12
Waves
What is a wave? How do you calculate the speed of a wave? In this skill sheet you will review how to answer these questions as you review wave properties.
1. The parts of a wave
1. On the graphic below label the following parts of a wave: one wavelength, half of a wavelength, the amplitude, the crest, and the trough.
2. In the graphic above, how many wavelengths are represented?
3. Define amplitude of a wave in your own words. What is the amplitude of the wave in the graphic?
4. How do you calculate the frequency of a wave?
5. If took 0.05 seconds for the number of wavelengths in the graphic to pass a certain point, what is the frequency of this wave?
2. The speed of a wave
Below is the formula for the speed of a wave. Use this formula to answer the questions on the next page. Be sure to show your work.
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Skill Sheet 12 Waves
1.
The speed of a wave can be calculated by multiplying the frequency by the wavelength. You can also calculate wave speed by dividing wavelength by the period of the wave. Why does this make sense?
2. The frequency of a wave is 40 Hz. The speed of the wave is 100 meters per second. What is the wavelength of this wave?
3. The wavelength of a wave is 50 centimeters. The frequency is 100 Hz. What is the speed of this wave?
4. The frequency of wave A is 250 hertz and the wavelength is 30 centimeters. The frequency of wave B is 260 hertz and the wavelength is 25 centimeters. Which is the faster wave?
3. Identifying harmonics
Let’s say you have a machine that supports a 3 meter piece of string. Using this machine you can measure the frequency at which the string vibrates at each harmonic. Table 1 is partially filled with data. Use your understanding of harmonics to fill in the rest of the table.
Harmonic # 
Frequency 
Wavelength 
Speed of the Wave Frequency times wavelength (m/sec) 
(Hz) 
(m) 

1 
3 
18 

(fundamental) 

2 

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