Simple Machines Unit: Wedge Hands-On Activities

The wedge is a pretty easy concept to remember, but we still took the opportunity to have some fun with wedges!

We spent some time outside at the wood pile using real wedges to split wood (plus, we got some wood ready for the woodstove!!)

This is a tool call a “Smart Splitter.” Even the kids can split wood with it. They simply lifted the weight and dropped it down to drive the wedge into the log.  Four or five drops and the log is split into two! [I highly recommend this if you need a relatively cheap log splitter! I've been using it almost daily because we have a wood-stove in our homeschool room.]

They also tried a traditional wedge and sledge hammer. That was much harder for the kids!

Finally, we spent some time doing soap carvings (knives are also wedges)! We hadn’t done this before, so we all have a lot of fun! This was a bit more of an “art” project than actual science, right?!

Related Posts (We are moving to We will be moving all our printables there.):

Don’t miss the free 25-page Simple Machines Packet I made or the other hands-on activities we did in connection with this unit:

  • Simple Machines Packet — this post explains what is available in the packet
  • the lever - lots of hands-on activities including lifting Mom, creating a moving arm (lever) with “muscles” and more
  • the screw – including Archimedes screw 
  • the pulley – the kids’ favorite day in this unit! 
  • wheel and axle
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