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ACTIVITY in Observations, Physical Properties, Phase Changes, Matter. Last updated March 01, 2023.
In this activity, students will be introduced to the general differences in organization of particles in each state of matter: solid, liquid and gas. They will have the opportunity to compare and then identify each state of matter during an edible activity.
By the end of this activity, students should be able to
- Recognize the 3 states of matter
- Identify a solid, a liquid, and a gas in a real word example
This activity supports students’ understanding of
- Physical Properties
- States of Matter
Teacher Preparation: 10-15 minutes
Lesson: Two 20 minute classes
- Regular latex party Balloons (approximately 3 per every 4 students)
- Ice cream- enough for one scoop per student
- Soda- ½ cup per student
- Cups- enough for each of your students to have 1
- Spoons- 1 per student
- Straws- 1 per student
- Normally, eating materials used in a science investigation is discouraged.
- You should take great caution if allowing students to eat materials used as part of the activity. Any items that have been in contact with classroom equipment should not be consumed.
- It’s advised that you set aside extra quantities of the edible components instead of eating items directly used in the activity. You should also be sure to check for allergy restrictions among students.
- Students should wash their hands thoroughly before and after the activity.
- When students complete the activity, instruct them how to clean up their materials.
- The balloon with ice in it might be heavy and could hurt if dropped.
- This activity is designed for Kindergarten through 2nd grade students.
- The teacher should know and understand the chemistry vocabulary.
This activity is designed for Kindergarten through 2nd grade students.
Review aspects of the phases of matter if you need to prior to the activity.
- Matter: Anything that has mass and takes up space. Matter is made up of atoms and molecules.
- Solid: The only type of matter that keeps its shape. The atoms and molecules of a solid are very attracted to each other and stay together in fixed positions.
- Liquid: A type of matter that flows and takes the shape of its container. The atoms and molecules of a liquid are attracted to each other but not as strongly as those of a solid. The atoms and molecules of a liquid are close to each other but slide past one another.
- Gas: A type of matter that spreads out to fill all the space of its container. The atoms or molecules of a gas are not attracted to each other. They just hit each other and bounce off.
- Write the name of each state of matter on a notecard and the definition on the opposite side.Bt crops, including potatoes and cotton, are genetically engineered using laboratory techniques. Which of the following utilizes recombinant DNA technology to produce advantageous traits in the crops that are produced? Bt crops, including potatoes and cotton, are genetically engineered using laboratory techniques. Which of the following utilizes recombinant DNA technology to produce advantageous traits in the crops that are produced?
- For approximately every four students in your classroom prepare the following:
- Fill a balloon with water and put it in the freezer in advance so it has time to freeze.
- Fill a balloon with room temperature water.
- I suggest that you pre-scoop the ice cream into cups in order to save time at the end of the lesson.
- Be aware that in the video used for engagement in the introduction of the activity defines solids as containing particles of matter that are close together, however that is not the case for solid ice used in this activity. Ice has unique properties and even though it is solid the particles are spaced farther apart in solid, ice than in liquid water. This is not common for a solid form of matter compared to its liquid form, and it doesn’t follow the example from the video.
- This is a link to a picture sort that you can use after the first or second day of the lesson.
- This is also a link to a cut and paste sorting activity that can be used for older students.
Day 1 Learning Objective: Matter vocabulary – matter, solid, liquid, gas
- Step 1: Show the video introduction to matter.
- Step 2: Divide the students up into three groups. One for solids, one for liquids and one for gas.
- Step 3: Give each small group one of the vocabulary notecards. Each group will become an expert scientist on that specific state of matter. Then each will share their knowledge of the vocabulary word with the class as a whole.
- Step 4: After each group has had a chance to explain their assigned state of matter, bring out the balloons with the frozen water, the balloons with the air, and the balloons with the room temperature water. As you show each of the balloons, explain which state of matter they represent. Pass the balloons around so that students can interact with them.
- Step 5: Students should complete either the picture sort or the cut and paste sorting activity based on the level of your students.
Day 2 Learning Objective: We can eat matter!
- Step 1: Read one of the books suggested below to review vocabulary learned on day 1.
- Step 2: Give each student a cup with ice cream and ask which state of matter it is.
- Step 3: Show the students the soda and ask which state of matter it is.
- Step 4: Ask students which state of matter they are missing in this activity. After they tell you "gas", tell them that we have all three states of matter in the 2 items shown. Then again, ask them where the gas will come from. Some students might be able to explain that there is gas in the soda and we will see it as bubbles when it is poured over the ice cream.
- Be sure that students have cleaned up thoroughly and washed their hands before deciding whether students can taste their ice cream sodas in the classroom.
- Allow students to pour their soda over their ice cream to see all three phases of matter. Pass out straws, spoons, and napkins.
- Sneezy the Snowman by Maureen Wright and Stephen Gilpin
- What is the World Made of? All About Solids, Liquids, and Gas By KathleenWeidner Zoehfeld and Paul Meisel
- Change It! Solids, Liquids, Gases and You by Adrienne Mason
- Solids, Liquids, and Gases by Ginger Garrett