cars made with legos

Simple Machines Change Lives

Third graders at Holmes finished their Geared Up study of simple machines by learning about a situation where a simple machine actually changed a girl’s life. The story from World Bicycle Relief is about 15-year-old Ethel walked more than two hours across hilly terrain each day to attend school in Kenya. With a bike, her […]

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Whittier 3rd graders move the world with simple machines

How do you get a room full of third graders to stay interested as the school year winds down? Bring them some Legos and show them how they use simple machines in every day life. Working in groups of two the nineteen students in Ms. Swanson’s third grade classroom built and experimented with OPEF’s Lego […]

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Lincoln Gets Geared Up

¿Qué pasa in la clase de Señorita Bartell? Señorita Bartell’s Spanish Immersion classroom at Lincoln explored the concepts of wheels and axles – one of the simple machine units offered through the Oak Park Education Foundation’s Geared Up program. Geared Up provides Spanish language instruction booklets, and the various lessons on simple machines give the […]

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Simple machines come alive in big way during field trip to OP Public Works

Lessons about simple machines came alive for more than 100 third graders from Holmes Elementary this week during a field trip to the Oak Park Public Works facility–the culmination of a Geared Up residency provided by OPEF. As a street sweeper rumbled to life, Geared Up Coordinator Gretchen Junker called out to the gathered students: “What […]

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Geared Up – en español, por favor

Each year, every 3rd grader in District 97 experiences the Geared Up LEGO engineering program – even kids in Claire Bartell’s Spanish immersion classroom at Lincoln. Working in teams of two, Ms. Bartell’s students engineered the simple machines with LEGO motorized mechanisms, testing what happened when they changed variables and learning first-hand about friction, mass, […]

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