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Force IT

Run the Module

A 2D Flash based module that runs in a web browser, if module doesn’t run download the latest version of the flash player from Adobe

Software Agreement

Grade and Content Area: 8th Grade – Physical Science


You’re controlling a ball, trying to get it over the nice green grassy platform. You want to keep the ball out of the hot lava lurking dangerously below. The only way that you can move the ball is to strategically place fans around the level and activate them in such a way as to use air resistance to accelerate the ball.

Lesson Plan

When it is most appropriate to use the Module: ForceIT! is meant to reinforce basic physics concepts after instruction has already been given. To be most effective (or, effective at all), students will need to have learned all of Newton’s laws as well as the different types of friction before playing the game. Students should receive at least a half-period learning what is happening from a physics concept when different things take place in the game. For instance, when a fan is moved to the ball, what is pushing what, and how do all of these forces lead to the ball moving? Going through game examples before playing the game proved to work well in retention.

Game Play: The object of the game is to drag fans from the main group and drop them around the perimeter of the level. Position the fans so that, after activating and deactivating fans (clicking on them), you can move the ball through the level. You get points for completing the level quickly, and for not using friction. In general, friction makes some levels easier (but not all). You always have enough fans to complete the level, though some cut it somewhat close and require some ingenuity. There are 18 levels; all are possible. Getting past the 18th level rolls over back to the start.

  • Left-Click Turns fans on and off; selects any of the buttons
  • Right-Click Changes Flash’s settings
  • Pause button Pauses the game timer, freezes the ball
  • High scores button Pauses the game and pulls up today’s high scores
  • Reset Level button Resets the level to it’s starting place except that the time is still rolling
Pre-test and Post Test Questions(doc)
Pre-test and Post Test Questions(pdf)


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0538588. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.