Contributed by: New York State Alternative Assessment in Science
Project (NYSED)
1996 Administration
Sand in Bottles 
Task: At this station, you will be
determining the different speeds that bottles will roll with
different amounts of sand inside. 
Materials:
 Clipboard
 2 books, approximately 25 cm thick
 5 bottles labeled A, B, C, D, and X
Directions:
 Make sure that your equipment is set up as shown in diagram
above.
 DO NOT OPEN ANY OF THE BOTTLES IN THIS ACTIVITY.
 Examine bottles A, B, and C.
 Starting at the line on the ramp, allow each bottle to roll
down the ramp once or twice and observe how fast each bottle rolls
down the ramp. Do not push the bottle.
 Record the relative speeds of the bottles in the data
table below. Use the following terms: slow, medium, and fast.
Data Table: Speed of Bottles
Letter 
Amount of Sand 
Speed of Bottle 
A 
Full Bottle 

B 
1/2 Full Bottle 

C 
1/4 Full Bottle 

 Based on your observations, write a general statement describing
the relationship between the amount of sand in the bottles and
the speed of the bottles.
 Roll bottle X down the ramp and observe how fast it rolls.
 Use this observation and the information from the data table
to determine how much of bottle X is filled with sand.
In the space below, explain the reason for your answer.
 Use the information from the data table to predict the speed
of a bottle 1/8 full of sand compared bottles A, B, and C.
Explain the reason for your prediction.
 Use the information from the data table to predict the speed
of an empty bottle as compared to the other bottles rolling down
the ramp.
 Bottle D is an empty bottle. Roll bottle D down the ramp. Did
it match your prediction?
What is a possible explanation for why this happened?
NYS Alternative Assessment in Science Project
NSF Grant #MDR9154506
Copyright, April 1996
The State University of New York
The State Education Department
Albany, New York 12234
