The Bicycle as a System: Introducing critical parts
1 Identifying parts of a system
Students are shown a bicycle. Ideally this is a real bicycle, but a projected picture will work. Ask students to view the bicycle as a system, not just a bicycle.
Ask students to write down the parts of the bicycle. This is the point at which you will need to help students think of the bike as a system.
- View the bicycle as a system. What is the purpose of the bike?
- What makes the system work? List the parts of the bicycle system.
2 Critical roles in a system
Students have already benefited from a survey of a bicycle as a system. Now take them deeper into an analysis of the parts (or roles) in the system.
Guide students to understand that critical parts of a system are those required for the system to perform its purpose.
Access MindMup at www.mindmup.com.
Select new MindMup to publish to your Google Drive.
Create a mind map for the bicycle as a system.
- Place Bicycle at the center.
- Surround bicycle with the parts of the bike that you have listed.
- Now arrange them by dragging non-critical parts to the right, and critical parts to the right.
3 Disruptions to a system
In this activity students defend their concept of critical parts to other students in a pair and share environment.
Have students pair and show their mindmap to one other student, comparing and contrasting with their own diagram.
The Backwards Bike video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MFzDaBzBlL0) shows a bike that has the steering reversed. Students may not have identified the direction of steering as a critical system.
- Pair up to share your mind map with one other student.
- Find and write one difference and one similarity between your diagrams.
- Now watch the Backwards Bike video.
- Based on the video, how should critical parts of a bike be identified?
4 Present your findings...
The final evidence that students understand:
- how parts of a system support the purpose of the system, and
- how disruptions to the system affect the system.
- On the class padlet provide a description of the following two concepts.
- Parts of a system:
- Disruption to a system:
- Follow up by posting one question you have for further learning. What are you curious about after today's lesson?