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L EA COPYRIGHTED R MATERIAL 2.4 RNI N G CE N TE AC TI V I TY WISHING WELL: USING A WHEEL AND AXLE PhySicS Materials 2 pieces of wood, 24 by 2½ by ½ inches 1 piece of wood, 13 by 12 by ½ inches 1 dowel, ¾ inch in diameter and 13 inches long 2 circular pieces of wood, 5 and 2 inches in diameter, respectively 2 large stick pins twine or cord small bucket plastic shoe box small plastic fish or toys Center Description The wheel and axle is another of the simple machines. It consists of a wheel attached to a rod, so that turning the wheel also turns the rod. In this activity, children can experiment with two sizes of wheels, either of which can be turned to lower a bucket into the well and fish for a surprise. The wishing-well frame is made from two pieces of wood, 24 by 2½ by ½ inches, that are mounted with paneling nails to a baseboard that is 13 by 12 by ½ inches. A third piece of wood, 14 by 2½ by ½ inches, is nailed to the two side pieces to form the top. A ¾ -inch hole is drilled 4 inches from the top of each side of the frame, and a 13-inch-long piece of ¾ -inch dowel is threaded through both holes. The wheels are made from two circular pieces of wood, one approximately 5 inches and the other 2 inches in diameter. Holes ¾ inch in diameter are drilled part way through the centers of the wheels. The ends of the dowel are then glued into these holes. Large stick pins are inserted into the two circular wood pieces to form handles for the cranks. To complete the wishing 24 c ha P TE R 2 well, a piece of 15-inch-long twine or cord is stapled to the middle of the dowel, and the twine is tied to a small bucket. A plastic shoe box, filled halfway with water, is placed on the base of the frame, and small plastic fish or toys are added. Children can compare the effects of the two sizes of cranks as they lower the bucket to fish for trinkets. If desired, the wood can be painted or stained to preserve it. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL