Happy Sally Ride Day!

In 1983 Sally Ride blasted through barriers as the first American woman to go to space.

So how did she get there?

Sally was pretty sure she was going to be a tennis player when she grew up. Then she caught the science bug. The rest is history. 

Would you qualify

Check out some of NASA's requirements. Or find out what it's like out there from Jerry Carr, who spent over 2000 hours in space.

It's not rocket science.

Want to know how rockets work? The basic principle is just Newton's third law. The folks at Veritasium  explain.

Please try this at home

Baking soda rockets are where chemistry meets trajectory, so give yourself some room to zoom. 

Today there are loads of amazing women in the space program. So if you want to be an astronaut, just set your sights as high as Sally did.


Abigail and Team RaceYa

Spinning Out of Control

Our heads are spinning here at RaceYa, and you can probably guess why.

Yes, everyone's doing it.

Now that every creature on the planet seems to be in on the spin we thought we’d dig into physics behind it all. Here’s a quick and dirty explanation from GorillaPhysics.

A new spin on things.

Ball bearings are key to the fidget spinner -- and the basic principles -- friction and inertia,  are pretty easy to understand. But Physics Girl found some toys that put a whole new spin on things.

Wanna go old school?

Clearly spinning is both fascinating and addictive. And you don’t even need a special toy to do it.

Please try this at home.

Those guys make it look easy. But in case you need a few tips, Sam Tucker will take you through the basics:


Abigail and Team RaceYa

A Battery of Batteries

We've been experimenting with our favorite source of portable energy...

What's a Battery Anyway? 

The clever folks over at SparkFun define batteries as "a collection of one or more cells whose chemical reactions create a flow of electrons in a circuit."  Solar power, electric power, even wind power all rely on some form of battery to store the energy they generate. What sort of energy does your home use and where is it stored

Wanna try?

Build a super simple electromagnetic motor.
Michael Faraday first invented them in the 1820s. Now they're used for hybrid cars and wind energy. 

DIY Electric Train

You can use the same principles to make this speedy little battery train.  How far and fast you take it is up to you.

Now dig this!

Speaking of clean energy, we just had to try this down and dirty experiment from Teach Beside Me. Yep, it really works!

No matter how much energy it takes, let's all keep working to protect the earth and our environment every day.


Abigail and Team RaceYa

Spring Forward with RaceYa!

Welcome to the new RaceYa STEM Newsletter!

Think of it as your guide to cool projects to do with the kids, fun videos to fill your lunch hour and smart facts to make you interesting at parties. Plus, you'll be the first to know about all the new developments happening at RaceYa! Welcome aboard.

This week at RaceYa, we’re celebrating Spring! Not just the season...the little coils that make the world go boing!

First, check out this hypnotically cool electro-funk "Ode to Spring" created with the sounds of industrial spring production.

DJ TASAKA - Komatsu Bane

What, exactly, is a spring?

A spring is an elastic object that has the ability to absorb, store and release energy through a change in shape. In other words, springs bounce back to their original shape after they’ve been pulled or squished. 

A rubber band is a spring. Robin Hood’s bow is a spring.

A trampoline is a spring.

The Laws of Spring 

Back in 1676, Robert Hooke came up with a law of mechanics and physics (now called Hooke’s law) that says that the force a spring exerts is proportional to its extension. Kinda like the whole “every action has an equal and opposite reaction” thing. Just don’t tell Newton!

Springs and Suspension

Auto Suspensions: "Spring Harmony"

Now, check out this vintage video from Chevrolet (circa 1935) to see why all cars, including our RaceYa RC, need suspension.

Please try this at Home.

Nothing says Spring like Peeps! Try this awesome catapult from the very clever lady over at From Playdough to Plato this weekend!


Abigail and Team RaceYa