Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Simple Machines: Pulleys

Pulleys are so fun! The concept of a block-and-tackle (multiple pulley configuration) was new to me, so I found it really interesting to test out why multiple pulleys make lifting easier. It makes sense when you think of the distance/effort tradeoff found in all the other simple machines!

This is a fun activity to help illustrate that concept.

And this is a good video about pulleys.

Here's a fun lesson plan with lots of good pulley activity ideas, like a pulley tug-of-war.

But really, the most fun of all was just experimenting with pulleys to lift things up and down from the balcony. We have these pulleys, which we used, and I borrowed a bunch of old spools (plastic thread spools and wooden spools) from my mom and just let the kids have at it. They came up with some great configurations. Daisy made a tiny paper flag and proceeded to hoist it up and down with great fascination and delight.
Malachi labeled a bucket "2000 Pounds" to make it more impressive :)
Abe had some elaborate multi-pulley system going on.
As did Sebby. Figuring out how to secure them to the balcony while still turning freely was kind of complicated.
I even found Marigold quietly inserting straws into spools and trying to make her own pulleys!

Another of Seb's efforts
Such a fun day!

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