Lifting with Levers!

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In this fun hands-on activity learners explore a simple machine: the lever. What happens to a load when you multiply the length of a lever? Find out here! The activity is related to an episode of Cyberchase: "Escape from Merlin's Maze," in which the Cybersquad must multiply the lengths of their levers to move multiplying stone slabs. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 11

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • Foam board, or heavy cardboard
  • ruler
  • marker
  • scissors or paper cutter
  • binder clip, medium size
  • 6 small paper cups (3-ounce size)
  • 50 pennies
  • tape


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Civil Engineering
  • Mathematics
    • Algebra
    • Measurement
      • Size and Scale
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Problem Solving
  • Physical Sciences
    • Energy
      • Work and Machines
    • Motion and Forces
      • Gravity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Source Collection

  • Cyberchase


  • All rights reserved, WNET.ORG Properties LLC, 2009

Funding Sources:

  • National Science Foundation
  • Northrop Grumman Corporation
  • Ernst & Young, LLP
  • PBS
  • Corporation for Public Broadcasting
  • The Volckhausen Family