Lesson 07 – Simple Machines Working Together

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Read About Simple Machines Working Together


Read the vocabulary terms to understand the reading better.

An axle is a rod that goes through the center of a wheel to help it move.

Gears are wheels with teeth that slot together. Gears are found in cars and bicycles.

An inclined plane can help move heavy objects. A ramp is an example of an inclined plane.

A lever can help move heavy objects such as heavy furniture or a large rock. When one side of a lever gets pushed down, the other side goes up. A seesaw is an example of a lever.

Simple machines make work easier and have few or no moving parts.

The support or fulcrum is the place where a lever pivots.

A wedge is a simple machine that can push things apart by getting in between them. A saw is an example of a wedge. A wedge can also hold things together. A nail or doorstop are examples of a wedge that holds things together.

Simple Machines Working Together

Some machines have simple machines in them.


Scissors are made up of two levers and wedges. The two handles you squeeze are levers. The scissors cut because the blades are sharp-edged wedges.


A shovel is also made up of a lever and a wedge. The blade is a wedge. It helps you cut into the ground.

The handle is the lever. Your hands are the support, or fulcrum that the lever balances on. It lets you lift the dirt more easily.


A bicycle uses many simple machines. The wheels and axles on a bicycle are easy to see. Each brake is a set of levers. Gears make the wheels turn.

Living with Machines

Simple machines and devices make life easier for people. Machines help us get around. They help us move large and heavy things.

Machines Make Life Better

There are many ways machines help us. Wheelchairs allow people with disabilities to get around. Wheelchairs roll easily because they have wheels and axles. People in wheelchairs cannot roll upstairs. But they can roll up inclined planes.

Simple machines and mechanisms make life more fun. Pianos use levers. When you press a key, a lever hits a string. This makes a sound.

People also use machines such as treadmills to be fit and healthy. Treadmills have inclined planes that can make exercising more difficult or easier.

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