The Science of a Cracked Egg The Freshman Experience With Newton’s Laws of Motion

In the days leading up to the week of December 18th, Mr. Timothy Brown’s period A freshman science class had an in-depth learning experience into the science behind Newton’s First, Second, and Third Laws of Motion. The class was required to make groups of two in order to create a landing pad that would absorb the shock of the momentum of the egg to ensure a safe landing without cracking or damaging it. The science behind the egg drop experiment introduces a hands on experience with the conservation of momentum and the force of the egg as it falls. Each team was given a specific amount of supplies and were not allowed to use any more than what was given. These included six popsicle sticks, six paper clips, six cotton balls, ten pieces of paper, one meter of masking tape, one plastic cup, and one pair of scissors. The listed supplies are meant to challenge the mind of each student in order to test them on the skills learned in class.

The mixture of eagerness and nerves was thick in the air as the first pair set up their landing pad on the floor. Skylar Bragg and Sara Degnan’s design was first, aiming to drop their egg straight into the opening of the plastic cup that they had chosen to include in design. Seconds before they dropped their egg, Bragg announced to everyone that she would miss the opening. Sure enough, the egg missed, splattering on the tarp covering the tile floor.

As Christian Balon and Ryan Miranda stepped up to the plate, the tension in the air grew. Their design consisted of a plastic cup filled with cotton balls, topped by a funnel, and balanced by four popsicle sticks in the shape of an ‘x’.The duo’s design lasted almost to the end of the competition, all the way at 2 ½ meters up. Their structure managed to stifle the force of the fall every time, causing the egg to roll out of their landing pad without further damage. Their design was simple but genius, almost making it to the final round where the height tricked Christian’s eyes, causing him to miss the opening of the landing pad and hit the floor.

Erick Solorzano and Mark Nkwantabisa design structure surprised everyone. Although it closely mimicked some of the other student’s designs, the overall stability of it took them to the final round. Nothing but “net” was what Erick managed to do every time by making the egg slide perfectly into the funnel unharmed. By the time their egg reached the height of the ceiling uncracked, it fell to the floor, again splattering just like the ones before it. They had won the competition, reaching the greatest meter mark without cracking their egg with the momentum of the fall.

Down to the final crack, Erick and Mark were the only students who made it to the final drop. After the excitement died down, Mr. Brown cleaned up the final broken yolk while the student’s discussed and compared their devices. And in the class’s eyes, everyone was a winner.