Aimed at Key Stage Two, this resource looks at the problem of launching RNLI lifeboats from different types of terrain in all kinds of weather. Linked to work on forces, shape and space and design and technology, it introduces the concept that both force and area affect the pressure applied on a surface. Working scientifically, children investigate which shapes produce the biggest indent on a sandy surface estimating and recording the area of each shape, then predicting and measuring how far each shape bogs down in the sand. They then apply what they have learnt to everyday examples such as vehicle wheel design and footwear. This resource, which has been produced by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), includes background information, a lesson plan and worksheets to carry out the investigation.

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