For our simple machines unit we used a combination of many resources to put together a variety of opportunities.
First, we used a resource than is no longer available. We used the Science Pockets by Dinah Zike which is no longer in print. If it were me I would use the Simple Machines Lapbook from Hands of a Child instead:
We did so much more in our study than this though, and that is what I want to share with you. I was saying earlier that one of the first things that I purchased was a microscope years ago, well I think the second thing was a set of pulleys and spring scales. I have used these for many co-op classes over the years.
I had our daughter set up many different pulley and scale explorations. I had her do many fun things like raising and lowering a basket of felt pens with different pulley combinations. I also had her weigh her load based on these combinations. This was fun and seemed to go on and on depending on the load and the pulley combination.
I then had “Little one” go around the house and find anything that was part of a simple machine. She took pictures of each item and then described it based on what we had learned. This was a great learning experience as well. Most of the items she found in the kitchen.
Years ago I had purchased Gearopolis from Discovery Toys. It has had much use through many of our children. I had our daughter set up many gear combinations and get them to work based on the flow of the gears. She enjoyed build these. I think Gearopolis is still available through Discovery Toys.
Finally, I had “Little one” build her own simple machine. She built a spaghetti eating machine with several simple machines in it. This was an experience in learning and later great eating!!