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Windy
 
 
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Windy
 
 
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Simple machines stations
Old 03-18-2008, 01:49 PM
 

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?

Screw--wrap a triangular piece of paper around a pencil to show the screw is just an inclined plane wrapped around a post.

Inclined plane--got a board and set it up like a ramp. Is it easier to slide the bean bags up the ramp, or lift them up?

Wedge--bin of sand. Which way is it easier to separate the sand, with a block of wood or a wedge?

I know this is a whopping lot of work to set up, but you could do just a couple of them to show how simple machines make work easier. The wheel and axle/lever/pulley are similar in that they all have turning points so you could choose one from that group, and another from the screw/inclined plane/wedge group as they are very similar.
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