How Is A Wedge Used?

Grade 2 is learning about Simple Machines. This week we looked at the wedge. We did an experiment where the students learnt that a wedge can be used to split things. When asked, “What does a wedge do?” they would all answer that it’s to split things. They could also identify an ax, scissors, a knife and a sword as examples of a wedge. We also pondered, “Can a wedge have another function?

To answer the question “How is a wedge used?” we did a second experiment. This time the students were given a block of wood and a wooden wedge. First the block was placed against an open door. Then they closed the door. Next the wedge was placed under the open door. This time when they tried to close the door, they were unsuccessful.

Before beginning the experiment, Malise predicted, “I think a wedge is used for splitting things.” Upon completing the experiement, she looked back at what she thought and noted what she learnt. “I learnt that the wedge stops things from moving as well as splitting things.”

Nik also predicted “A wedge is used to cut things.” When reflecting back on what he thought and what he discovered Nik learnt that “A wedge can be used for more than cutting.


4 Responses to How Is A Wedge Used?

  1. Linda Yollis says:

    Dear IST Grade 2,

    I really like how you predicted the uses of a wedge and then tested it.

    Two people mentioned that cheese often comes in a wedge. I was also thinking of a wedge of lemon to squeeze on a fish dinner. Also, some women’s shoes are called wedges because of the shape of the heel!

    Thanks for a great post!

    Mrs. Yollis

    P.S. I found your website from Mr. Webb in New Zealand and I’m glad I did!

  2. Tima says:

    Dear Dr Peacock,

    The cheese starts as a circle. When a slice is cut, the shape is now that of the wedge. It is then called a “wedge of cheese”.


  3. Extremely good predictions grade 2!
    I liked it how you discovered that a wedge has more than 1 use.
    I hope you enjoy your future experiments, GOOD LUCK!!!!

    Bradley, room 8
    Melville Intermediate
    Waikato Hamilton New Zealand

  4. Dr. Peacock says:

    Wedges are interesting shapes. For instance, I often buy a “wedge of cheese”. I don’t use it as a doorstop to to split something. Why do you think they call it a “wedge of cheese”?

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