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Simple Machines: What Is a Wedge? (Grade 3)

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Simple Machines: What Is a Wedge?

Scissors A wedge is a simple machine used to split or push apart objects. The sharp blades of scissors are an example of wedges. They help cut apart paper.

A wedge is two back-to-back inclined planes. The inclined planes give the wedge its triangular shape with a sharp edge. The sharp blade of an ax is a wedge. It helps split apart wood. Some wedges have more rounded ends. The ends of a fork are slightly rounded wedges that help break apart and pick up food.

A thin, sharp wedge is easier to use to push apart an object than a thick, dull wedge. A thinner wedge needs less force to push it through an object than a thicker wedge. But, it will need to be pushed over a longer distance.
A wedge is a simple machine that is useful for a moving heavy object from a low place to a high place.
  1. True
  2. False
When a wedge is pushed down between objects, the objects                .
  1. press together
  2. move apart
  3. also move down
  4. do not move
The wedge is most closely related to which other simple machine?
  1. lever
  2. pulley
  3. inclined plane
  4. wheel and axle
Which of these body parts is the best example of a wedge?
  1. knee
  2. tooth
  3. elbow
  4. shoulder
Which shape looks most like a wedge?
  1. Equilateral Triangle v1
  2. Square
  3. Circle

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