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Simple Machines

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Stratagies that reinforce the concept of simple machines
Simple Machines
Posted by:Effie Kiosederis #55410

Hi my name is Effie and I am a teacher in Toronto, Canada. I did a unit on simple machines in the first term. I set up a theme table that had buckets with different kinds of machines (levers, gears, wheele & axle, screw, inclined planes, complex machines etc.) and I let the students interact with them. I brought small items from home (i.e. egg beater, toy cars, used classroom items (i.e. stapler, ruler, scissors etc. For assignments they designed a pulley using a clothes hanger and spool, and thread. They also made small toy cards out of small boxes, dowel and wooden wheels. I used a video to introduce the theme, then I let the students play with the different type of levers and then we did the hands- on activities. I used 3 books I have on Simple Machines investigations, and I also have a...

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Simple Machines
Posted by:June #12282

Here's what I did when I taught the students about simple machines last year. I split the class into 6 groups (one for each simple machine, there a six simple machines). Each person in the group had a different job. One child was in charge of making (building) a working model or invention based on that simple machine (I called that child the Engineer). Another child (in the same group) was in charge of gathering as many obects (real) that are based on the simple machine (that child was the Prop Coordinator) and the other child was in charge of designing a large display board with pictures of that simple machine and facts (found on the Internet, in magazines, etc.). All work was done in school. After all their projects were finished, each group had to present their projects (display board, invention, and real samples) to the class. They...

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simple machines
Posted by:Tim #84839

Hi,
In our simple machines class, we looked at real life examples, then the children completed reports on simple machines in everyday life. I also added a writing assignment. It was in December last year when we covered simple machines and I had the students complete a story using the machines. The story was.... Christmas Eve and Santa was loading his sleigh, when it suddenly broke.. how did the elves repair the sleigh and load it with gifts using simple machines... A little out there but I teach both language arts and science..

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simple machines
Posted by:cherie #55476

One of the most engaging ideas I've ever tried involved making a device whereby children could experience very directly the reduction in effort associated with pulleys. I cut a simple seat from a piece of 2x6 (about 15" long) and drilled 1/2" holes in each of the four corners. I then made a trip to the hardware store and purchased about 25 feet of sturdy rope (like 1/2 inch polypropylene)and a several single pulleys (with hooks or holes to allow attaching them to your rope) that would work with that size rope.
Cut off 2 sections of rope about 6 feet long and thread one through each end of your seat, bring the rope ends together above the seat, and securely knot them together (allowing enough room for a child to sit comfortably below the knot) Then attach a single pulley to the top of this. I then took...

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ideas on simple machines
Posted by:katy #26229

One idea is to find pictures in magazines of things that contain one or more simple machine (i.e. a teeter totter for a lever). Put these pictures (which you may wish to laminate) in an envelope near or on the BB. Divide the board into six sections, and label each with the name of a simple machine. Students can look at the pictures and tack them to the appropriate section of the BB. I've done this as a file folder game, but it could be a good interactive BB for students who complete work early. Hope this helps!

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inventions
Posted by:patt #73345

We've done Macaroni machine inventions after studying simple machines.. Each child "invented a machine" that had one or more simple machine in it. They drew it then glued macoroni(all differnt shapes) onto the drawing. Mocels are imoprtant. It works they love it and it's tactile too

Some machines wre The homework machine, the bed maker etc.

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Oh how fun
Posted by:Alicia G #134894

Why not create a bulletin board, piece by piece and each time you study a new simple machine, add it on the board?

One thing I like to do is to bring in a huge basket of all the simple machines that I found in my kitchen. You can do this at the beginning of the unit as an intro, or at the end to see if they can identify the machine (as a lever, screw, etc.). Also, during the unit, you can have them look for simple machines during the school day (on the playground, in classrooms, etc.).

Oh, the kitchen tools I bring in often include:

My kitchen shears (two wedges connected into a lever)
My "cheater bar" which is a lever I use to open hard to open jars.
My cork screw which has a screw on it.
My egg beaters...

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field trip
Posted by:yowz #134895

When we get near the end of simple machines, we take a field trip to the school kitchen and the school custodial office. I set up ahead of time with some of the workers to explain some of the tools they use at work and we look for simple machines they may use around our school or preparing food. That way the kids can see some simple machines that are used everyday.

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simple machines
Posted by:hazeleyesinnc #134896

How about having them come up with a game like "Mouse Trap?" or having them do an art project with pictures of items that they can identify all the simple or compound machines. A book- like an abc book, but with simple machines and possibly compound machines would be another idea. Hope this was helpful.

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Simple machines stations
Posted by:Windy #134897

I do a simple machines stations lab in which they try each of the simple machines.

Wheel and axle--slide a book across the table. Slide it again but with round pencils under it. Which is easier?

Pulley--I set up 2 pulleys, one a single and one a double to lift objects. One is easier. You could just set up a pulley on a piece of dowling between 2 chairs. The kids can see if it's easier to lift the object by hand, or does it seem easier with the pulley? I made 1 lb bean bags for this. Pulleys are not too expensive at the hardware store.

Lever--long stick with weight on the end and a block of wood for the fulcrum. Which way is easier to lift the weight, with the weight and fulcrum close together or far apart?

...

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The Big Book
Posted by:benteach #134898

Simple Machines was awesome to use with my class then they made their own simple machine book.....one page for each of the six. My class is quite artistic and I was able to keep three of the books for future display ----the books were also displayed in the front office.
For experiments I used the book Pictture Perfect Science with the book
Sheep in the Jeep.......we experimented with legos etc. to also try to model the drawings that the students came up with .....to learn more about force...friction....ertia....etc.

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No title
Posted by:Mrs. O #134899

Find a thick board (2 x 6 I think) you will also need a block of wood to balance the board. Challenge the children to find a way to lift you in the air using only the board and pivet. (They will have to move the board off center and stand you on the short end.)

I asked an auto salvage to donate a part of a transmission for the kids to take apart and see the gears.

We are starting our Simple Machines unit in January. I am challenging the kids to create an invention and identify the simple machines used to make them. Last year I had one of my girls create a double toothbrush to save time brushing the tops and bottoms of her teeth. I also had a toy crusher and a kool-aide mixing robot. We displayed them at the Science...

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Simple Machines
Posted by:Jennifer in OK #134900

Some of the things I do with this unit:

Tug of War (pulleys)

Milk Carton Cars (have kids save and more importantly rinse out milk cartons - cut them in half - decorate - get pipe cleaners and wooden wheels - have a race) - this demonstrates wheel and axle, inclined plane, wedge

Have students make a list of simple machines in their house. If this is tested by state or district, they often have to know examples in everyday routines.

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