Simulators – a fun way to learn difficult concepts

Ever tried to throw a baseball as high or as far as you can? Have you ever used a sling shot? Or perhaps you’ve gone to a children’s museum and used an air gun to shoot foam airplanes.

Each of these activities (and countless others) involve a concept of physics known as projectile motion. This week’s bonus challenge has your child using a simulator created by the University of Colorado, to help your child learn the basics of this concept. The simulator is a fun way to teach your child (and yourself…I may have just spent 15 min tinkering with the simulator…hitting that target is quite exhilarating!) about how the mass, height, and distance all have an affect on each other when an object is projected.



Once you’ve spent some time on the simulator, take your child outside to apply what they’ve learned. You could throw balls, shoot water guns, toss water balloons, play with water coming out of a hose, or build a simple catapult and fire just about any small object on it. We’d love to see your real-life applications of the simulator at work! So take pictures and send them to

If you enjoyed this simulator or want to test out others, visit the University of Colorado’s website. They’ve created countless basic software programs to teach children (and adults) of all ages about various topics in both science and math.

Questions or comments? Email us at Or visit and read our FAQs section. Happy Hunting!