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Leonardo da Vinci's Robots



Leonardo da Vinci's Robots
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.59

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    posh, theatrical, sketch, electronic, mechanism, operate, entertainment, additional, rediscovered, design, planes, automobile, ringer, works, court, died


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Leonardo da Vinci's Robots
By Sharon Fabian
  

1     For years after Leonardo da Vinci died, many of his notebooks were lost. Then, they were rediscovered in modern times. The discovery of the notebooks stirred up a renewed interest in Leonardo's inventions.
 
2     One of his notebooks contained a sketch of a cart with wheels. The cart was low to the ground and had three wheels. Scientists, artists, engineers, and creative people of all kinds were fascinated with the drawing. It was not a cart meant to be pulled by horses or by people. It appeared to be a cart that was meant to move on its own.
 
3     Many people hypothesized that it was a design for an automobile. After all, Leonardo was already known for his sketches of planes and helicopters. It made sense that he would have been interested in a vehicle for traveling over land too.
 
4     Scientists began to try to figure out how Leonardo's cart worked. They studied every detail of his drawings. They read and reread his notes. They tried to build a model of the cart. The more they studied and experimented, the more the scientists began to see that there must be something more to Leonardo's cart than what met the eye.
 
5     By these close observations, scientists deduced that, in order for the cart to operate properly, there must be additional parts that could not be seen in the drawings. Finally, by combining what they knew of Leonardo's ideas with their own ideas, they were able to build the cart.

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