Grade Levels: K-3

These family and homeschool activities are designed to complement the Pushes and Pulls topic on BrainPOP Jr.

Push a Block

Give your child a block or a toy car to push across different surfaces. He or she can push the object across the rug, a sweater or sweatshirt, a smooth desk, a rubber mat, or, if possible, on the ground outside on dirt or sand. Encourage your child to push in the same way with the same strength. When was it easiest to push the item? When did the item move the fastest? Try measuring the pushes to find out when it traveled the farthest. Discuss how friction is a force that slows down moving things, and how friction is useful in your daily lives.


Present a challenge for your child: in one hour, how many activities can he or she do that require pulling or pushing? Have your child brainstorm different activities before beginning their time. Can they push a stroller or cart, or pull a suitcase or box? Have your child think of different activities and then try to fit as many as he or she can in an hour. Be sure your child records his or her activities in a notebook. After time is up, review the activities. Which required the most energy to push or pull? Why? What activities were easy, and what were made difficult by friction?