3.8.2 – 3.8.3 How do different machines work?

This lesson was contributed by:

Primary Science Team

This lesson is for:

Lesson Duration:

45 mins.

What should you expect from this lesson?

By the end of the lesson, children can investigate how simple machines work and give everyday examples they will also find out about scientists who made discoveries related to how things move e.g. Leonardo da Vinci etc.

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How to carry out this lesson at home:

• Video – Leonardo da Vinci
• Resources depending on activity

Video – Leonardo da Vinci
Watch the video clip on Leonardo da Vinci. Elicit the importance of asking questions. Leonardo da Vinci was a very famous scientist and inventor. He accomplished things by looking and observing, doing and experimenting and asking questions. Scientists observe and ask a lot of questions and that is how new inventions are made.

Tell the children that they, as scientists, are going to make their own invention by observing and researching and doing things. Children can work individually or in groups on their project. The role of the teacher is to prompt and facilitate the project work.

Talk about different machines. Elicit that machines work in different ways according to the function. In their project children are going to make a simple machine. Reference to different inventors can be made.

Important steps for the project:
1. What is the question for the project?
2. Predict what will happen. Discuss your prediction. Conduct research.
3. Try it out. Observe. What can be improved?
4. Write down your conclusion. Present your project.

Suggestion 1: Levers

Simple Machines Unit: Hands-On Activities on Levers

Suggestion 2: Designing a moving vehicle (wheels and axle)
Wheels and Axles – Simple Machines Activities for Kids

Suggestion 3: Hydraulic or pneumatic system

Video – How to build a moving monster.
Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5QqinrOcblM&ab_channel=IvydaleScienceTechnologyService

Moving Monster Challenge
Children can create a moving monster using any of the above systems. Some questions to think about:
• How can you make the monster’s arm or leg move up or down?
• How can you make the monster’s tongue stick out?
• How can you make the monster’s mouth open and close?
• Can you make the monster in a moving car?

Children can do a self-evaluation or peer evaluation of their projects. Below are some questions to guide them:
• What do I like about the project (the creation)?
• What problems did I have to solve? How did I solve them?
• What can I improve?

Cross-Curricular Links:
 Literacy:
 Comprehension on Leonardo da Vinci or other inventors.
 Reading – Conducting research for the project.
 Oracy – communicating, discussing and presenting the project.
 Mathematics:
 Measuring and estimating lengths.
 Creative Arts:
 Designing and making/creating a simple machine.
 Social Studies:
 Working in a group – group dynamics.

All the resources you need to carry out this lesson at home:

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