Levers and linkages in Year 4

This half term in Design Technology we have been investigating two different types of mechanism; levers and linkages.

We started off our topic by looking at how each of the mechanisms work by analysing products that use levers and linkages. We learnt about using fixed points as leverage and how every day items like scissors use these mechanisms to work. We then had a go at making some levers and linkages using card and split pins. We made waving hands using levers and moving dragons using linkages. We found it quite straight forward to make a lever mechanism but it was more challenging to make a linkage and it required lots of resilience to ensure the parts moved.

After conducting our research we were given a design brief; to design a Christmas card including a lever our linkage mechanism. We thought about who would be the consumer of our Christmas cards and what kind of design would appeal to them. We then planned our cards and drew sketches which we annotated with the different types of materials we would need.

Over the past two weeks we have been making our cards. We have had to use our measuring, cutting and design skills to ensure our products are to a high standard. We found that using split pins and card was the best way to incorporate a lever mechanism onto our card. We began by making all of the parts for our cards before finishing the decoration and putting the parts together today.

We have really enjoyed designing and making our Christmas cards and have learnt lots about lever and linkage mechanisms.