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Dirtmeister's Science ReportersFriction
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Kids around the country have investigated and found examples of friction. Check out some examples.


Walking
Crystal, Grade 4, NJ

Our shoes and the surface we are walking on are rubbing together. It could be a rug, polished brick, or a floor made of tile. Well, if we are walking on the rug it kind of slows us up. If I want to walk faster, friction makes it harder. Well, I think if I'm walking on a rug there's nothing I can do to reduce friction, but if I'm on a tile floor I can polish it. This will make it great to slide on, wearing only socks!!!! But if I'm barefoot, the polishing will not make that much difference. If I have shoes like sneakers then it will be harder. Our sneakers will sound like cars when they burn rubber. Rollerblading on a rug!!!! you definitely have to work harder!!!

Scrubbing A Plate
Janine, Grade 4, NY

The two things that are rubbing together are the plate and the sponge. In this case, friction helps by removing dirt from the plate. To increase the friction, you get a good sponge with a rough surface. Friction is similar when you are washing a car.

When Writing With A Pencil
Keith D, Grade 3, VA

The tip of your pencil and the paper are rubbing together. Friction is helping you get something done. It rubs off lead particles, which makes your writing or your picture visible. You can decrease the amount of friction by sharpening your pencil. This lessens the amount of one of the two rubbing surfaces. When you write with chalk on a chalk-board, the rough surface rubs off chalk particles making your picture or your writing visible.

When You Write on a Chalkboard
Ms. Christie's Class, Grade 4, NY.

When you’re drawing on the chalkboard, the two things that are rubbing together are the chalk and the chalkboard. Friction is helping you to write. Write harder so there is more friction. Drawing on a piece of paper is a similar case to drawing on a chalkboard.

Brushing your teeth
Ms. Christie's Class, Grade 4, NY.

When you're brushing your teeth, the two things rubbing together are the brush bristles and your teeth. Friction is helpful while brushing. It allows you to clean your teeth. Sometimes the friction is bad because it can hurt your loose tooth when you're brushing it. Also, if you brush too hard, and there's too much friction, it can hurt. To make your teeth cleaner, brush harder or longer. To keep the brushing from hurting, reduce the friction by brushing more gently. Similarly, if you brush your hair, it's good for you. If you brush too hard, it could hurt you. Scrubbing helps clean, but scrubbing too hard can damage an object. Friction can be helpful, but too much can be harmful.


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