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Shoe Day

Science Lesson
for Shoe Day

The students will define simple machine and identify the parts of a pulley.


  • The Shoe Pulley Worksheet

  • A link to EdHeads

  • The following items will be needed to create the shoe pulley.  Only one of each will be needed for a class demonstration.  If the students are to make their own in small groups, enough items will be needed for the number of groups: a shoe with shoelaces, an empty spool, a pencil.



  1. Discuss what a simple machine is - a machine with few moving parts that makes work easier.  Use the EdHeads web site for information on different types of simple machines.  Concentrate on the pulley.

  2. Instruct the students to make a pulley using the given objects.  The students may be placed in small groups or it can be done as a teacher demonstration.

  3. To make the pulley - place the pencil through the empty spool.  Have a student hold the ends of the pencil.  Hang the shoelaces over the top of the spool.  Pull the shoelaces down to raise and lower the shoe.

  4. Pass out the Shoe Pulley Worksheet and work as a class to answer the questions.  For younger students, pass out blank pieces of paper and have them draw a simple diagram of the shoe pulley.   


Other Lesson Ideas

  1. Read any of the nonfiction books on the Shoe Home Page explaining how shoes are made.

  2. Have a lesson on inventions and how the shoe at one time was an invention.  Use the Cool Quiz web site for information on the first shoes.  Also, changes made to shoes over the years are due to new inventions - rubber for soles, Velcro for fastening, etc.  Have the students ponder a new invention that would make shoes better today.

  3. Have a lesson on rubber trees since many shoe soles are made of rubber.



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