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Planning the Playground

How can we use what we know about forces and gravity to create a fun and safe playground?

Students will use their knowledge of forces to survey a playground. They must identify how gravity, forces, and simple machines have been combined to create a play experience that is safe and is calibrated to the expected force applied by a primary student.


They must then create a new piece of playground equipment, applying their knowledge of gravity, forces, and simple machines, that children will love!  


Key tasks


  • Analyse existing equipment. Students will explore different examples of playground equipment (swings, seesaws, slides) to investigate how the combination of gravity, forces, and simple machines create a safe play experience 

  • Ideate new equipment. Students will look at examples of machines and equipment used outside a playground which combine forces, gravity, and simple machines – like catapults and rock-climbing pulleys – to help them develop ideas for how to create an innovative new piece of playground equipment 

Key facts:

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Curriculum information

Science - Physical Sciences – Gravity, unbalanced forces, and simple machines

ACSSU117 | VCSSU103 | SC4-10PW



15 - 20 lessons

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