Correlation. Fountas & Pinnell R DRA 790L. Estimated Lexile Measure. Systems and Simple Machines Simple Machines and Building the Great Pyramid

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1 Close Systems and Simple Machines Simple Machines and Building the Great Pyramid Correlation Fountas & Pinnell R DRA 40 Estimated Lexile Measure 790L Written under funding from Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES by: Antonietta Quinn, Resource Teacher Danielle Hoch, Reading Specialist Designed and Printed by the BOCES 2 Printing and Graphics Services. 10/11 Copyright 2011 by the Board of Cooperative Educational Services for the Second Supervisory District of Monroe and Orleans Counties, Elementary Science Program. All rights reserved. This publication may only be reproduced for one-time classroom use. No part of this publication may be stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted or reproduced, in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES, Elementary Science Program. Elementary Science Program www espsciencetime or

2 Table of Contents Background...3 Great Pyramid...4 Gather and Move Stone...6 Levers and Inclined Planes...7 Wedges Conclusion...12 Glossary...14 Inclined plane a flat surface raised on one end, such as a ramp. Lever a stiff bar that sits or turns on a fulcrum used to raise or move a load. Limestone a rock used as a building stone. Pharaoh an ancient Egyptian king. Quarry a pit where stone is gathered. Simple machine a machine with few or no moving parts that helps make work easier. Spiral circling around a center point and slowly getting closer to or farther away from it. Wedge a simple machine used for splitting or cutting. 2 15

3 Barge a large boat with a flat bottom used to move goods. Chisel a tool with a cutting edge shaped like a wedge used to cut or shape wood and stone. Complex to make difficult. Glossary Egypt a country in northeast Africa. Friction the action of one surface or object rubbing against another. Fulcrum the fixed point on which a lever arm turns or balances. Background The pyramids of Egypt are some of the most amazing buildings in history. They were built without modern tools. There were no computers, electronics, or complex machines. To cut, shape, move and place the large stones was very difficult. The Egyptians did not know about electricity or gas engines. Yet this society built these mountains made of stone. Between 3000 and 1100 BC Egypt was ruled by kings. These kings were called pharaohs (fair-ohs). The pyramids of Ancient Egypt were built as a place to bury a pharaoh. They were built with four sides and one peak. Some think the sides were a symbol of the sun s rays shining on the pharaoh. Others believed the sides were to be used as ramps. The ramps would help the spirit of the king climb to the sky and be with the gods. Great Pyramid the oldest and largest pyramid in Egypt built as a tomb for an ancient pharaoh. 14 3

4 Great Pyramid The largest pyramid, the Great Pyramid, was built for King Khufu near Cairo, Egypt. It was designed by Khufu s brother. It took 30 years to build. This pyramid covers 13 acres and is 481 feet high. It was built with 2.3 million limestone blocks. The blocks were cut and moved without the use of the large tools we use today. The Great Pyramid Spaces in the corners are thought to have been used for turning the stones that were being moved to higher levels. Ramp outside the pyramid Ramp inside the pyramid 4 13

5 Conclusion Historians and scientists continue to study the pyramids today. A new idea of how they were built was presented by Jean- Pierre Houdin. He is a French architect. He studied the Great Pyramid for many years. Houdin believes a spiral ramp was used to raise the blocks to high levels of the pyramid. However, he thinks this spiral ramp was built inside the pyramid. Houdin thinks a ramp outside the pyramid was used to build the bottom of the pyramid. A second ramp was built inside the pyramid to move blocks to the top parts of the pyramid. Wouldn t it be exciting if we removed a few blocks from the outside of the Great Pyramid and saw a ramp inside it? The mystery of how the Great Pyramid was built continues. 12 Tens of thousands of men helped with the pyramid s construction. Many believe the men who built the Great Pyramid were slaves. Most of the workers were farmers. They worked on building the pyramid during the flood season when their farms flooded. These workers were paid in food and clothes. The Ancient Egyptians did a lot of work to build a pyramid. They had to push, pull, and lift tons of rock. The biggest question is, How did these ancient people lift over two million stone blocks so far off the ground? Historians believe that the workers did use different machines to build the pyramids. These machines did not run on gas or electricity, but they did make the work easier. These machines were simple machines. 5

6 Gather and Move Stone The first step in building the Great Pyramid was to collect the stone from the limestone quarry. A quarry is a place where large amounts of rock can be found in the ground. Hammers and wedges called chisels cut the rock out of the quarry. The stone was shaped into blocks. The men would move the stone from the quarry to the building site. Wedges Sometimes the stone blocks would need to be broken into different size pieces. The workers would use a hammer and a chisel to create a crack in a piece of rock. They would insert a wooden wedge into the crack. The wood was soaked in water. The water caused the wood to swell. The swelling wood would push the stone apart. A chunk of stone would, in time, break off the stone block. hammer chisel 6 11

7 At the end of the inclined plane, it is thought that a lever crane was used by the workers to move the heavy stone. The lever crane works like a seesaw. Many ropes were pulled by men on one side of the lever to lift and help move the attached block on the other side of the lever. The fulcrum was found in the middle of the lever crane. A stone block was moved into its final place with the use of the smaller wood levers. rock Levers and Inclined Planes weight moves up people push down lever fulcrum The men used ropes and heavy logs as levers to move the stone blocks from the quarry onto wood sleds. The sleds were pulled onto a ramp or inclined plane. The ramp led to a harbor on the Nile River. They placed the sleds on barges. A barge is a type of boat. The barges floated down the river to a harbor near the pyramid site. lever crane 10 7

8 Another inclined plane helped move the stone from the barges to the building site. These ramps were made of mud and stones which made the sleds difficult to move. Ancient pictures show the men pouring liquids under the sleds, and the liquids helped reduce friction when moving the sled. The sleds were placed on rollers made of logs to help them move. These logs were cut with a saw or wedge and placed under the stone. The logs would act as wheels and made it easier to push and pull the stone. When the stones got to the site, the blocks for the first level of the pyramid were put into place. Then the next level of the pyramid was started. Two simple machines helped the men do this: the lever and the inclined plane. The ramps or inclined planes may have been straight and built in front of the pyramid. They could have also been built in a spiral around the pyramid. An inclined plane around the pyramid. An inclined plane in front of the pyramid. sled rollers made of logs 8 9

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