6-8 > Physical Science
 Grade level: 6-8 Subject: Physical Science Duration: Two class periods
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Students will understand the following:
 1 The sixsimple machinesare the basis for all mechanical devices. 2 The six simple machines are as follows: the inclined plane, the lever and fulcrum, the wedge, the screw, and the wheel and axle, and the pulley 3 Leonardo da Vinci was one of the greatest inventors of all time. 4 Each of his designs implemented one or more of the six simple machines.

For this lesson, you will need:
 • Research materials about simple machines and about Leonardo da Vinci • Computer with Internet access

 Adaptations for Older Students:Have students write an explanation for how their simple machine helps do work. Explanations should include the termsfriction, load, force, surface area, anddistance.

 1 It is said that with Leonardo “there is more than meets the eye.” Explain the meaning of this statement and give examples to support your answer. 2 After reviewing Leonardo’s accomplishments, do you believe that Leonardo would enjoy life today in America? What might he be doing if he were alive today? 3 Analyze how Leonardo integrated science and art in different aspects of his life. Hypothesize how incorporating his philosophies could improve your approach to life. 4 Do you think Leonardo would feel right at home with robots, submarines, and airplanes? Explain why. 5 Experts stated that “only posterity could carry out Leonardo’s ideas.” Do you agree or disagree? Explain your answer with supporting examples.

 You can evaluate your students on their assignments using the following three-point rubric: Three points: example of simple machine and example of more complex machine provided, presentation clear and complete Two points:example of simple machine provided, but failure to provide example of more complex machine; presentation clear One point:example of simple machine provided, but failure to provide example of more complex machine; presentation unsatisfactory You can ask your students to contribute to the assessment rubric by determining criteria for a clear and complete presentation.

 The Greats Have students choose an inventor to research. Students should write reports about the inventor’s life and achievements, in addition to listing his most important inventions and explaining how one of them works. Here is a partial list of inventors from which to choose: Benjamin Franklin, Alexander Graham Bell, Eli Whitney, James Watt, Thomas Edison, Guglielmo Marconi, Michael Faraday, the Wright brothers, Charles Babbage.    What’s Next? Assist your students in generating a list of possible 21st century invention needs. Begin the brainstorming session by suggesting some potential problems or needs including but not limited to pollution, aging, health, recreation, traffic, information management, literacy, clean energy sources, weather protection. Invite students to form groups and choose a need they would like to fill by proposing a new invention. Allow time for groups to meet to discuss their ideas. Have them sketch their invention and write an explanation of how it works and whom it will benefit. (Students should understand that their inventions should be imaginative, but not necessarily viable.)

 Leonardo: Discovering the Life of Leonardo da Vinci Serge Bramly [Translated by Sian Reynolds]. Edward Burlingame Books, 1991.This in-depth study of the life of Leonardo will help the reader understand this man who was an artist, inventor, scientist, philosopher, and genius of the Renaissance. The black and white sketches and photos will add to your understanding of the insights of this great designer. What Makes a Leonardo a Leonardo? Richard Muhlberger. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Viking, 1994.This book carefully examines 12 of Leonardo’s paintings. Of these 12, two are unfinished, one is in ruins, and one is lost, known only from copies by other artists. Read about the history and techniques used in each of these works to gain a greater understanding of this master. We also see Leonardo as a biologist, botanist, engineer, and inventor from his supplemental notes and drawings.

 Exploring Leonardo A comprehensive overview of the life of Leonardo DaVinci is explored at this location. Included at the site are interactive activities that explore his life as a scientist, an inventor and as an artist. The Leonardo Museum in Vinci This is the official web page of the Museum of Leonardo. Visitors can take a virtual tour of the exhibits and locate geographical, historical, and biographical information. Leonardo’s World The web site provides an overview of the Renaissance. Features include “Become a Renaissance Man in 9 Easy Steps” and “A Renaissance Timeline.”

 Click on any of the vocabulary words below to hear them pronounced and used in a sentence. Definition:The transitional movement in Europe between medieval and modern times beginning in the 14th century in Italy, lasting into the 17th century, and marked by a flowering of the arts and literature and by the beginnings of modern science. Context:The helicopter was originally designed by Leonardo da Vinci. It was the dream of the original Renaissance man. Definition:Something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past. Context:But Leonardo’s legacy extends well beyond the dozen or so paintings that exist today. Definition:An exceptional, unusual, or abnormal person, thing, or occurrence. Context:According to Carlos Pedriti, Leonardo was “a phenomenon of nature.” Definition:A craftsman. Context:The artisans must be able to invent, design, and construct. That is the complete artisan, the artisan of the Renaissance. Definition:Something hard to understand or explain. Context:Who is Leonardo the man? Who is this mystery? Trying to understand the man behind the accomplishments—this enigma—is the challenge of researchers today. Definition:Future generations. Context:Leonardo was ahead of his time. It was only posterity that could carry out his ideas. Definition:Capable of being done or carried out. Context:Leonardo’s original drawings are entered into the computer, taking into account his written notes. It is then possible to test the feasibility of his ideas.