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The Daily DoodleDo! Levers & Catapults

Updated: Mar 23, 2020

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Hi Everyone, today's DoodleDo is a mini physics experiment!

Watch the video as we are using objects we have at home to create a simple catapult to launch gold coins into the Leprechaun's Pot and knock down a block castle. Next you will see that we made DoodleMatic Super Slingshot games that use the same physics concepts as the catapult.

What is a Catapult?

A catapult is a mechanism used to hurl or throw heavy loads a distance from their starting point. Catapults can be complex machines that include many simple machines to increase their effectiveness, but a basic Catapult can be as simple as a lever! A lever is one of the 6 simple machines!

Simple Machines are tools or devices without moving parts that make work easier by changing the motion and force. The six simple machines are the lever, inclined plane, wedge, wheel, screw and pulley.

A Closer Look - What is a Lever?

So how does it work?

A lever or simple catapult spreads out the force along the length of the beam to amplify the force put into it, so you don't have work as hard to get the same result.

Building our Lever Catapult

Catapult Materials:

1. Blocks of multiple sizes and shapes

2. Spoons, multiple sizes and shapes

3. Rubberbands

Load Materials:

We used chocolate coins and small blocks, but you can use any small toys or objects. Try objects of varying weights and materials to experiment with. See what flies the farthest?

Putting it all together:

Level up your experiment!

Take your experiment to the next level by trying these things.

1. Experiment with different size spoons this will change the length of the beam. What happened?

2. Experiment with different size and shape blocks, this will change the height of the fulcrum. What happened?

3. Change the weight of the load. What happened?

Make a DoodleMatic "Super Slingshot" Game!

Materials: You can use the DoodleMatic Kit or:

- white paper

- markers (black, green, blue, red, & purple)

- the DoodleMatic App*

1. Draw the setting in black- this is where the story takes place. If we use the our scenario of the castle, we could draw the ground and a few details.

2. Draw your avatar(s) in Green- these are the objects you will launch at your goal

3. Draw the goals in Blue- what does the avatar need to reach? If we were recreating our physical game it would be the pot of gold.

4. Draw the hazard in red- this is the villain or problem in the way reaching our goal. This could be the leprechaun!

5. Use purple to draw movable objects like the blocks that made our castle or any structure you want to crush. Falling purple objects can also crush and collect your goals!

Uploading your Game:

1. In the DoodleMatic App* click create and take a picture of your game. Test your game!

2. You can edit your game by resizing, moving and removing parts of your game.

3. You can enhance your game with power ups! Make objects, rotate, or your bean stalk grow, play and explore!

*NOTE: You can make 2 trial games with the free download- if you want to continue to making games with the app we recommend that you purchase our box kit ($29.99). The DoodleMatic Box kit allows the user to make 1000 games and comes with 2 interactive books that teach game design, helping kids through the creative problem solving process. The app can also be bought as an in-app purchase for $34, but we recommend the books!).

Share your Game:

Beat your game and share with friends! Ask a parent to help you (if you are under 13 it works through their email). In the Victory or Game Over screen click share and you will get a link that your parents can email or text to family and friends. They can play your game on their web browser!

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