Mechanisms: Wheels and axles

In this topic, children are given the opportunity to problem solve and experiment with mechanisms to help them develop a clear understanding of how they work. The children assume the role of a mechanic and troubleshoot why certain wheels don’t rotate. They then demonstrate their learning by designing and building their own moving vehicles.

Choose your lesson

Lesson 1: How do wheels move?

After investigating how wheels move on a variety of different objects, pupils create a simple version of a wheel mechanism, including an axle, wheel and axle holder


Lesson 2: Fixing broken wheels

Children are shown a range of examples of wheels that don’t work and have to use their problem solving skills to diagnose the problems


Lesson 3: Designing a vehicle

Children learn about the different components of a vehicle with moving wheels before designing a moving vehicle of their own


Lesson 4: Wacky Races

Using their designs, children build their vehicles before testing them out