In this interactive activity from the American Museum of Natural History, explore how the apparent motion of an object depends on the observer's frame of reference. An animation of a basketball player bouncing a ball shows how the perceived motion of the ball depends on your point of view: if the basketball player is walking and you are standing still, the ball appears to move in a zigzag path; however, if you walk along with the basketball player, the ball appears to bounce straight up and down. Test your understanding of frames of reference by interpreting the apparent motion of a ball in different scenarios.
This media asset comes from the American Museum of Natural History.
© 2014 PBS & WGBH Educational Foundation. All rights reserved.