Thematic Units - Simple Machines

Simple Machines

You will find various Lesson Plans on the top portion of this page.
Further down, you will find Web Sites.
At the bottom of the page, you will find Books that you can order directly from!

Lesson Plans

Exploring Simple Machines (WebQuest) Grade 4
The machines we use every day help to make our work easier. This WebQuest will help you identify different types of simple machines so that you can invent your own machines.

Inventor's Toolbox Grades Various
Find great examples and explanations of various simple machines.

Marvelous Machines Grade s 1-5
"Machines make work easier—as students learn when they read about a visit to a potato-chip factory in the storybook Aisha Makes Work Easier. This unit guides students to think like industrial engineers as they explore the surprising variety of simple machines people use every day."

Physics-Based Lesson Plans Grades Various
Find additional simple machine lessons here.

Simple Machines Grade 3
This is great unit in PDF form, so you need Adobe Acrobat Reader to access it. If you don't have A.R. click HERE for a free download. (This is a great program to have on your computer!)

Simple Machines Grades 2-4
The students will be able to identify the six simple machines and how they are used in our lives. They will gain a basic understanding of the use of force and effort."

Simple Machines with Robotics Grades 3-4
In this site, you will find everything we know about the environment on LEGO Centauri and the equipment available to build a robot to help the LEGOnauts.

Work and Machines Grade 3
"Students will use simple machines and demonstrate their understanding by building a simple machine."

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Web Sites

Bill Nye
Resources under the "Home Demo" link.

Early Simple Machines
LEGO's site...allows you to purchase a great kit to use in your classroom to help introduce the idea of simple machines to younger students.

Simple Machines Activities: Learn about simple and compound machines while you explore the House and Tool Shed! (Lesson Plans & Resources)

Exploring Leonardo Page
"Explore this site and learn about this fascinating scientist, inventor, and artist."

How Stuff Works
A fund and educational site to help you and your students learn more!

Introduction to Mechanisms
Here is some detailed information geared toward teachers or older students.

Inventor's Workshop
A site that offers information on some of the greatest inventions.
Learn about each of the six simple machines.

The Official Rube Goldberg Site
"Best known for his "INVENTION" cartoons that use a string of outlandish tools, people, plants and steps to accomplish everyday simple tasks in the most complicated way, Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist Rube Goldberg's drawings point out that people are often overwhelmed by over complicating their lives."

Simple Machines
A ThinkQuest project all about machines.

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Ancient Machines : From Wedges to Waterwheels (Ancient Technology)
by Michael Woods, Mary B. Woods

Forces and Machines (Making Science Work)
by Terry J. Jennings

Forces and Simple Machines (Science Factory)
by Jon Richards

Gear Up! : Marvelous Machine Projects (Design Challenge (Minneapolis, Minn.).)
by Keith Good

How Do You Lift a Lion?
by Robert E. Wells

Inclined Planes (Simple Machines)
by Michael S. Dahl

Janice Vancleave's Machines : Mind-Boggling Experiments You Can Turn into Science Fair Projects (Spectacular Science Projects)
by Janice Pratt VanCleave

Levers (Early-Reader Science Simple Machines)
by Michael S. Dahl

Levers (Glover, David, Simple Machines.)
by David Glover

Liz on the Move (Magic School Bus Book Series)
by Tracey West

Machines We Use (Hewitt, Sally. It's Science!,)
by Sally Hewitt

Pulleys (Simple Machines)
by Michael S. Dahl

Pulleys and Gears (Glover, David, Simple Machines.)
by David Glover

Ramps and Wedges (Glover, David, Simple Machines.)
by David Glover

Screws (Glover, David, Simple Machines.)
by David Glover

Simple Machines
by Melvin Berger

Simple Machines (Design and Create.)
by Fran Whittle, Sarah Lawrence

Simple Machines (Starting With Science Series)
by Deborah Hodge

Simple Machines Made Simple
by Ralph E. St. Andre

Springs (Gover, David, Simple Machines.)
by David Glover

Machines We Use (It's Science)
by Sally Hewitt

Wheels and Axles (Simple Machines)
by Michael S. Dahl

Working Machines (Energy and Action)
by John Marshall

These books are out-of-print, but may be found at the library:

Bathtubs, Slides, Roller Coaster Rails : Simple Machines
by Christopher Lampton

Bathtubs, Slides, Roller Coaster Rails : Simple Machines That Are Really Inclined Planes (Gateway Simple Machines)
by Christopher Lampton

Cro Knows: All About Levers, Pulleys, Gears, Wheels, Bridges, and Scales
by Gail Herman

Finding out about simple machines
by Gene Darby

Forces and Machines (Investigate and Discover Series)
by Robert Gardner

Hands on Science Simple Machines
by John Carratello

Machines and How They Work
by Harvey Weiss

Marbles, Roller Skates, Doorknobs : Simple Machines That Are Really Wheels (Gateway)
by Christopher Lampton

Projects With Machines (Simple Science Projects)
by John Williams

Sailboats, Flagpoles, Cranes : Using Pulleys As Simple Machines (Gateway Simple Machines)
by Christopher Lampton

Seesaws, Nutcrackers, Brooms : Simple Machines That Are Really Levers (Gateway)
by Christopher Lampton

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