How many gears are in action in our class at the moment? Which could be replaced by other mechanisms / power sources? Encourage children to give examples.
To create an instant display get children to draw and cut out a simple gear or gear train, on which they write a use for it. Link different children’s gears up together to demonstrate how if we all work together we can get a greater end result.
Children could go on to experiment with Lego gears.
As a class work way through the Gears file on http://www.ngfl-cymru.org.uk/vtc/ngfl/dandt/s_smith_isf/index.htm
Encourage children to ask questions, relate to real life examples and support one another with understanding.
What is a gear? Which of Brunel’s designs would have used gears? Elicit suggestions by playing pictionary with the class, a child who knows a use comes up and draws it for the class to guess. This should allow other uses to be considered. Record all the suggestions and work through the role of gears on each. How are gears still used today – think of common vocabulary, e.g. in the car / on a bike.
In what ways are gears crucial to our transport network?