Simple Machines

 

Adapted* by:  Becky Ledbetter

Library Media Specialist

Charles C. Clippard Elementary School

January 25, 2005

 

 

Introduction

Task

Process Evaluation

Conclusion

Teachers

 

Introduction

 

Dear Third Grade Engineers,

 

Mrs. Herbst has just learned that there is a serious shortage of tools for the custodial staff to perform their tasks required to keep Clippard School tidy and clean.  It is the belief of the custodial staff that any tool that helps one in the home will also assist them here at Clippard School.  As a result, Mrs. Herbst has asked me to recruit some engineers to help design tools for the custodial staff.  I have put you on the job.  Put on your thinking caps and get your creative juices flowing so that the custodial staff can get their work done.

 

Sincerely,

 

Mrs. Ledbetter

 

 

 

Task

 

You and your partner need to research the seven basic simple machines to get a clear understanding of how they work and what they do.  The information collected will be used to invent a new machine using two or more simple machines.  You will write a paragraph describing your invention, and you will also draw a picture of your machine.

 

 

Process

 

Step 1:

 

You and your partner have formed a team to help design a new and useful household invention for the custodial staff at Clippard school.  In order to comply with Mrs. Herbst's request, you will need to research the seven basic simple machines using the links that have been provided.  To gather the appropriate data, print  the Data Sheet  and use it to record all your research data.  Be sure both you and your partner each fill out a Data Sheet completely before moving on.

 

Use the following web sites to get all the information necessary:

 

         A.  Edheads

        B.  Inventor's Toolbox

        C.  Scholastic

        D.  Lego

After using the first 4 sites to gather information, please use the following site to go through the Simple Machine Activities.   Ask your teacher for instructions on using this site, as you must print the results of each quiz to turn in with your packet of information for your grade.

        E.  Edheads    

 

Step 2:

 

You and your partner should use the information collected on the Data Sheet to develop a new invention using two or more simple machines.  Both simple machines in the design must serve a purpose and cannot be just decoration.  It is important that each person contribute to the design of the new machine as two heads are better than one.  Please advise your teacher that you are at this point in the process by placing the yellow cup on top of your computer.   While you are waiting for your teacher, you may open the paint program and draw pictures of the simple machines you have just researched or pictures of what you think your invention might look like.  Your teacher will then give you the instructions for brainstorming for your invention.  When your teacher instructs you to do so, print one copy of the Invention Planning Sheet

 

Step 3:

 

In order to share your invention design with the custodial staff, you and your partner will need to draw a picture of your invention.  Look at the scoring guide to see how you will be graded on this step.

 

Step 4:

 

You and your partner will write a paragraph that clearly tells us about your invention.  It should tell us what the invention is used for, how it works, what two simple machines it includes, and why the custodians or other people would want to buy it.  Refer to the scoring guide to see how you will be graded on this step.

 

The custodians are anxiously awaiting your inventions.  There is no time to waste.

 

 

 

 

 

Evaluation

 

Your team will be graded using the following scoring guide.  If you want a copy, print one copy of the Evaluation.

 

 

Excellent

4

Good

3

Fair

2

Poor

1

 

 

 

Data Sheet

 

 

 

The data sheets are complete and have accurate information on all 7 simple machines

The data sheets have accurate information on 5 or 6 simple machines

The data sheets have accurate information on 3 or 4 simple machines

The data sheets have accurate information on only 1 or 2 simple machines, or most data is not accurate

 

 

 

Invention

 

 

 

The invention includes  2 simple machines and both are doing work on the designated chore

The invention includes 2 simple machines but only one is doing work on the designated  chore

The invention uses only one simple machine that does work on the designated chore

The invention does not does not work on the designated chore

 

 

Description

 

The paragraph clearly includes all the information requested

The paragraph includes all the information requested but is not clearly stated

The paragraph does not include all the requested information

The paragraph does not include most of the requested information

 

 

Grammar

 

 

The paragraph includes complete sentences that have capital letters, periods, and other grammar elements appropriately

The paragraph mostly includes complete sentences that have capital letters, periods, and other grammar elements appropriately

The paragraph contains mostly incomplete sentences, as it does not include capital letters, periods or other grammar elements

The paragraph is not included or the information is not written in paragraph form

 

Team Work

 

 

Worked well with partner and used class time wisely

Worked well with partner and used class time wisely most of the time

Occasionally worked well with partner and/or did not use class time wisely

Did not work well with partner and/or use class time wisely

 

 

Conclusion

Mrs. Herbst recognizes that it takes lots of hard work to complete the task of helping with the custodians' needs.  Your help is greatly appreciated.  You may have made the difference in our school's appearance!!!

 

Teachers

This project is intended to be used with the third graders in Computer Lab classes to meet the curriculum needs in the state of Missouri.  Our classes are 40 minutes in length, and it is anticipated that it will take 3 to 4 class sessions to complete this project.  We are planning to draw the pictures of the new invention in the classroom during one of the science periods.

We plan to begin this project by brainstorming as a class to learn what tasks the custodians perform at our school.  We anticipate that some classes will need to brainstorm again as a  class rather than in the groups for inventing the new inventions so that we can all see how two or more simple machines make a compound machine to perform a task.  During this brainstorm session, the Resource Chart will be given to the students so that students may compare their notes to what should be included (model notes for them), which may help the groups invent their new tool.  We will give the Resource Chart to all groups whether or not brainstorming occurs as a class or as a group.

Students are expected to print their quiz results as they complete each room in the web site for section E.  These quiz results will be turned in along with the Data Sheet, Invention Planning Sheet, as well as their drawing and paragraph upon completion of this project to show accountability. 

The unit will be taught in collaboration with the classroom teacher with some of the tasks being completed in the regular classroom as stated above.

The addresses for the sites used for research purposes are as follows:

        A.  http://www.edheads.org/activities/simple-machines/sm-glossary.htm

        B.  http://www.mos.org/sln/Leonardo/InventorsToolbox.html

        C.  http://teacher.scholastic.com/dirtrep/simple/plane.htm 

        D.  http://www.legoeducation.com/content/item.aspx?CategoryID=137&art=14

        E.  http://www.edheads.org/activities/simple-machines/index.htm 

 

* This web quest was adapted from an original web quest by Ms. Tina Monks and was also called Simple Machines dated June 13, 2002.