FOSS Module Summary

Module Summary – Levers and Pulleys (2nd Ed.)


Humans are the only living creatures that have been able to put materials together to construct machines to do work. Our capacity to see and invent relationships between effort and work produced through simple machines has led us into a world that is becoming more technologically oriented. Knowledge of these relationships is necessary for understanding all mechanics. The Levers and Pulleys Module consists of four investigations that involve students in fundamental concepts of simple machines.


  • Gain experience with the concept of force and the application of force to do work.
  • Gain experience with the relationships between the components of lever systems and pulley systems.
  • Gain experience with the concept of advantage as it relates to simple machines.
  • Analyze real-world tools and machines in terms of the simple machines that make them work.
  • Systematically collect and record data.
  • Use measurement in the context of scientific investigations.
  • Use diagrams to translate three-dimensional relationships into two dimensions.
  • Acquire vocabulary associated with two simple machines (levers and pulleys).
  • Apply mathematics in the context of science.
  • Use scientific thinking processes to conduct investigations and build explanations: observing, communicating, comparing, organizing, and relating.

For a description of each investigation in the Levers and Pulleys Module and the correlations to the National Science Education Standards, download the Module Overview PDF.

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