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Lesson Plan: Forces in Equilibrium

This lesson plan includes the objectives, prerequisites, and exclusions of the lesson teaching students how to resolve forces into two perpendicular directions and use them to find a missing force in equilibrium.


Students will be able to

  • find a missing force given that the forces are in equilibrium,
  • find a missing force in a word problem given that the forces are in equilibrium.


Students should already be familiar with

  • forces given in terms of unit vectors, given in polar form, and represented graphically,
  • the magnitudes and directions of forces,
  • adding and subtracting forces,
  • resolving forces into horizontal and vertical components,
  • inclined planes.


Students will not cover

  • finding the resultant of forces that are acting at different points,
  • the triangle of forces,
  • Lami’s theorem.

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