Unit Title

Simple Machines


Grade 2

Designed by

Jon Banules

Time Frame

6 weeks

Stage 1- Desired Results

Establish Goals

The goal is for students to...

ISTE Standards for Students:

1: Creativity and Innovation

Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology.

c. Use models and simulations to explore complex systems and issues.

2: Communication and Collaboration

Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others.

a) Interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media

b) Communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats

d) Contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems

3: Research and Information fluency

Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information.

b) Locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and media

c) Evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks

4: Critical thinking, problem solving, and decision making

Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools and resources.

b) Plan and manage activities to develop a solution or complete a project

c) Collect and analyze data to identify solutions and/or make informed decisions

d) Use multiple processes and diverse perspectives to explore alternative solutions

5: Digital Citizenship

Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior.

b) Exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports collaboration, learning, and productivity

6: Technology operations and concepts

Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations.

a) Understand and use technology systems

b) Troubleshoot systems and applications

d) Transfer current knowledge to learning of new technologies

International School of Phnom Penh Curriculum

Central Idea: The application of scientific principles through the use of simple machines makes work easier.

  • The ways machines and forces work (function)
  • The applications of machines to make work easier (causation)

Science Strands: Forces and Energy

The student will be able to:

The ways machines and forces work (function)

  • Experiment with different simple machines  
  • Explain how the 6 simple machines are used

The application of machines to make work easier (causation)

  • Explain how simple machines help make work easier
  • Experiment with forces to gain an understanding of how they work and how they make work easier
  • Gain an understanding of how the combination of simple machines leads to complex machines



Learners will be able to....

What kinds of long-term independent accomplishments are desired?

Science Skills

Investigate (Hypothesise)

  • Identify or generate a question or problem to be explored
  • Make and test predictions

Plan (Design)

  • Plan and carry out systematic investigations, manipulating variables as necessary


  • Observe carefully in order to gather data
  • Use a variety of instruments and tools to measure data accurately
  • Use scientific vocabulary to explain their observations and experiences

Evaluate (Conclude)

  • Interpret and evaluate data gathered in order to draw conclusions
  • Consider scientific models and application of these models (including their limitations)


UNDERSTANDINGS (From central idea and lines of inquiry)

Learners will understand that...

  • Computers are machines that can make some work easier.
  • Computers and devices allow us to simulate the real world.
  • Computers and devices increase our abilities to experiment.
  • Real world scientific principles can be simulated and experienced on computers and devices.
  • Computers, devices, and the internet allow us to learn about machines and forces.
  • Creating computer games and applications involves scientific process skills and thinking.
  • Computers and devices can be used to model and present our scientific understandings.
  • Special coded instructions cause computers and devices to do work.
  • Code is a language of procedures.
  • The scientific process is similar to the design process.
  • Troubleshooting and debugging involves mini experiments.

Essential Questions (From teacher questions)

Learners will keep considering...

  • What are machines?
  • How do machines function?
  • How do we experiment?
  • What is force?
  • What are simple machines?
  • How do machines make work easier?
  • How do computers and devices make work easier?
  • How do computers and devices help us learn about the world?
  • How do computers and devices help us simulate force?
  • How do computers and devices help us become better scientists?
  • How can we use computers, devices, and the internet to learn?
  • How are video games similar to machines?
  • How do we design applications?
  • How do computer simulated experiments compare with real world experiments?
  • How do basic codes affect computers and devices?
  • How do we fix problems when experimenting with computers and devices?


Learners will know… (lines of inquiry, concepts)

  • The meanings of vocabulary: machines, simple machines, force, forces, gravity, lever, wheel and axle, pulley, inclined plane, screw, wedge, work, tools, direction, distance, strength, tradeoff, input, output, reaction, effect, causation, experiment, test, experiment, hypothesis, results, observations, combination, causation, function, investigate, design, process, evaluate, measure, infer, classifying, predicting, communicating, variables, length, height, width, data, code, computer science, debugging, troubleshooting,
  • That experimenting involves creating questions, making predictions (hypotheses), identifying variables, testing, observing results, evaluating results, altering variables, retesting, reevaluating, etc.
  • That changing variables (increasing the length of levers, adding pulleys, etc.) in an experiment will alter results.
  • That computer scientists use similar basic science process skills as other scientists.
  • That the scientific process is similar to the design cycle.
  • That coding and designing apps involves making many mini-experiments.
  • That code is a language of instructions for computers.
  • That debugging (revising/editing) is an essential part of coding.
  • That there are apps that can help us learn about real life scientific principles.
  • That we can learn about various scientific principles in online communities.
  • That “work” in science equates with movement caused.

Learners will be skilled at... (ATLs)

  • Describing the characteristics of simple machines.
  • Measuring characteristics of simple machines and results of experiments.
  • Classifying tools as simple machines.
  • Experimenting with simple machines.
  • Observing work done by simple machines.
  • Inferring how work is made easier by simple machines.
  • Analysing complex machines into simple machine components.
  • Communicating the results of experiments with simple machines.
  • Comparing work done by variations of simple machines.
  • Comparing experiments done on computers/devices and in real life.

Stage 2- Evidence


Learners will show that they understand by evidence of…

GRASPS Task written in student-friendly language:


Your goal is to create an online video game that teaches students about simple machines.


You are a computer scientist/video game maker.


Students who are learning about simple machines and forces.


You need to combine your understanding of simple machines and your growing knowledge of video game design to create an educational game.


Using Scratch, or Gamestar Mechanic, or Game Salad, or Tynker, or Game Maker, or Inkle, you will make a game/app that will teach about simple machines.


Learners  will show they have achieved Stage 1 goals by demonstrating their understanding through the Six Facets of Understanding...


Students will write or narrate a brief explanation of what they have learned about one simple machine in a blog entry.


Students will discuss what happens during the course of playing Tinybop games about simple machines as part of a small group.


Students will use what they learn about testing during real simple machine experiments while playing simple machine simulations and when coding.

Have perspective

Students will discuss how to create different levels of the game they create.


Students will make a presentation about simple machines using multi media sources of information.

Have self-knowledge

Students will decide the schedule of when they work on games vs. other projects from unit.

Stage 3- Learning Plan

Time Frame

Learning Events

Progress Monitoring

Day 1

Resources / Materials: