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University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Transportation Systems Engineering

Teacher Resource Center

Lesson Overview
Lesson Title:
Cam and Linkage Motion/Mystery boxes

Mrs. Donna West (Primary)

Brief Description:
This is a lesson that could be a follow-up to the mystery unit in the English Anthology. The students will apply foreshadowing, prediction, collection of evidence. This is a great introduction lesson at the beginning of the school year.

Topics Introduced:
Inference, observation, data analysis

Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics Curriculum Framework Components Addressed:
Facility and Mobile Equipment Maintenance
Suggested Grade Levels:
6th Grade
7th Grade
8th Grade

Standards Taught:
8.1.1 Science 2003

Lesson Information
Learning Expectations:

See lesson plans for "box" activity expectations.
Students will perform at the 80% level on the Elements of the Mystery test.

Plan Of Action:

A.Teach the first story of the mystery genre
B.Introduce prediction, foreshadowing, evidence collection (environmental details).Review terms
C.Introduce inference boxes
D.Show students cam and linkages display. Push buttons to demonstrate models.
E.Students solve inference box problems by recreating drawings of the inside contents and structures of one or two boxes.
Notes:1. Solving one box will inform solution of
other boxes.
2. Seeing a materials list will inform
solution of boxes.
3. If time permits students will design
their own inference boxes.
4. Make examples (display board) of cam
and linkage mechanisms.
5. Make a display board of the story
elements for the mystery.
6. Review what is necessary to have a
complete circuit.
Materials List:
Corrugated cardboard, tubes
Scissors. X-acto knives
Hot glue gun(s, Glue sticks
Paper fasteners, small screws and nuts
Tongue depressors, small drill(s)
Rulers, marbles, crayons

Sound: collision, barriers
Sight: levers, movement

Data Set Used:

Successful identification of structural elements inside the inference box.
This is checked by opening the box.
Student success rate will increase with practice.

Materials Needed:

See list in lesson plan

Preparation Period:

It would take approximately thee weeks to prepare the display boards and boxes.
The power point will take another week.

Implementation Period:

The mystery unit will take three weeks.
The box activity will take two days of that unit time.

Science, Math, Engineering and / or Technology Implications:

Physical analysis of structures, moving parts and relationships

Unexpected Results:

Students need little reinforcement of the elements of the mystery. Inference boxes are too challenging or too simple.

Considerations for Diversity in Education:

Is there a gender difference in the motivation factor of going from verbal to kinesthetic/application presentation of these ideas?

Lesson Files
Cam and Linkages Motion
The movement of the structural elements is discussed in terms of prediction, foreshadowing and collection of evidence as more examples are shown.
[size: 28672] [date uploaded: Jun 19, 2009, 2:46 pm ]

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