Unit

Unit Summary: Simple machines are devices with few or no moving parts that make work easier. Students are introduced to the six types of simple machines — the wedge, wheel and axle, lever, inclined plane, screw, and pulley — in the context of the construction of a pyramid, gaining high-level insights into tools that have been used since ancient times and are still in use today.

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In this unit, students will learn about how energy is transferred during a car accident. The students will then have to design a vehicle restraint system to protect a  “passenger” in a collision. Students will need to research existing restraint systems. Students will need to design a restraint system of their own in small groups.

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Students will learn what it means to be autonomous and how to program robots to move on their own. They will learn the importance of giving specific, exact directions in a computer program to make the robot do what they want and go where they want. They will program the robots to complete increasingly difficult tasks, culminating in a robotics team competition.

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Students begin the unit learning about what robots are and how humans use robots to avoid dull, dirty, or dangerous work. Students will complete several tasks that require them to design a solution to a problem while following the given criteria and constraints, while also learning about inputs and outputs on a robot.

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Students will explore the idea that they are interconnected to many larger communities (classroom, school, family, neighborhood, city, world, etc.) They will also explore the need for these communities to have systems in place where each person plays a role in making the systems function.

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Students will learn about the physical, observable properties of matter. They will describe objects based on their properties. They will observe changes in matter, learn about the different states of matter and create a animated model that explains the states of matter.

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This unit will focus on weather.  Students will explore what weather is, how weather is measured and how weather impacts living things.

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The central idea of this unit is to understand and identify a variety of nonfiction text features as well as using them to create a feature article on an expert topic of your choice.

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The central idea of this unit is: living things coexist and are interdependent.  In this unit, students will learn about how living things get what they need from the environment, how living things rely on each other, and how humans can affect their environment.  After learning about these things, students will write a narrative piece of writing about animal friendships.

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The central idea of this unit is how sharing artifacts is a fundamental characteristic of humans that connects them to each other and culture.

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