This is an interesting investigation for the present emergency……

Make a slope using a thin hard surface. It needs to be hard-back to support the cans, and thin so the tins can roll smoothly off the end. I’ve used table-mats here, but any thin flat surface will do. Make the slope as shallow as possible – I’ve used just a couple of other mats to make the slope. If you make the slope too steep you will have cans rolling a long way……

Get a variety of cans from the cupboard. You will find they are all roughly the same weight (400 grams) so you might expect them all to roll the same distance.

To make it a fair test, always roll the cans from the same point. I’ve made a mark with a pencil (difficult to see in the photo, so I’ve used the pencil to point to it). That’s why I turned the table mat on its back, so as not to ruin it!

Do the cans all roll the same distance?

Try as many different tins as possible. Try soup, baked beans, cat and/or dog food, tinned tomatoes. Is there a pattern to your results?

My thanks to the children of Berger School, Hackney, for sending me this picture showing the outcome of an investigation:

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