Sign In
Sign In
Register for Free

Forces KS2 – Simple machines STEM activities

What's included?

PDF medium term plan, worksheets, PowerPoints and teaching notes

Key Stage



Years 3-6


In this six-week series of forces KS2 lessons, pupils will learn about six simple machines and how they transfer force from one place to another.

They will then carry out an investigation into how much force it takes to move a load up an inclined plane and build their own simple pulley, mini catapult and toy car.

To save you time, we’ve provided everything you’ll need to follow the plan, including worksheets and PowerPoints. Raid your cupboard for a few extra resources such as paper cups, string and paperclips.

  • Understand that machines transfer force from one place to another
  • Identify uses for six simple machines
  • Build and investigate inclined planes
  • Use the terms ‘load’ and ‘force’
  • Build and investigate fixed pulleys and systems of pulleys
  • Explore how pulleys change the direction of a force and make lifting easier
  • Investigate levers and fulcrums
  • Identify and compare machines that are powered by the wheel turning or the axle turning
  • Use knowledge of simple machines to design a compound machine

This download contains

  • Full PDF medium-term plan
  • Worksheets
  • PowerPoints
  • Teaching notes

Laura Cross is a former primary teacher. She set up Inventors & Makers. in 2019 and runs workshops and classes focusing on STEM, design and 21st-century skills. Follow Laura on Twitter at @inventorsm. Read more about STEM education.

Forces KS2 – Simple machines STEM activities

You'll also receive regular updates from Teachwire with free lesson plans, great new teaching ideas, offers and more. (You can unsubscribe at any time.)

Which sectors are you interested in?

By signing up you agree to our Terms & Conditions and privacy policy

Explore teaching packs

Pie Corbett Ultimate KS2 Fiction Collection
Pie Corbett Ultimate KS2 Fiction Collection
Fire up KS2 pupils' imagination with this collection of 20+ fictional stories, written by literacy expert Pie Corbett. Each ... more
20 x resources
Pie Corbett KS2 Non-Fiction Collection
Use Pie Corbett’s non-fiction texts to inspire your KS2 pupils to get writing. Each resource contains an original text in ... more
6 x resources
Pie Corbett KS2 Poetry Collection
Inspire KS2 pupils to be creative and express themselves with this pack of Pie Corbett poetry. Each of these Pie Corbett Tal... more
7 x resources
WAGOLL classroom resources
WAGOLL Packs from Real Authors
Peer inside the mind of award-winning children's authors and help pupils understand how to create engaging characters, capti... more
6 x resources
Art KS2 inspiring medium term plans
Art KS2 Inspiring Medium Term Plans
Get pupils' creative juices flowing with these expert medium-term art plans for KS2. Each resource consists of a full half-t... more
6 x resources
Magical Harry Potter Teaching Ideas
Magical Harry Potter Teaching Ideas
Spark pupils' imaginations with these inventive and exciting teaching ideas, all themed around the wonderful world of Harry ... more
11 x resources