Friday, October 7, 2011

States of Matter

When my math/science host teacher said that she was doing a unit on matter I begged her for the chance to do a project with our 5th graders. I have been obsessed with Pinterest lately (who hasn't) and I have been dying to try a cross between something at Beakers and Bumblebees and bk2400's Photostream that taught how molecules act in the different states of matter using fruit loops as molecules. I read some books to the class to teach them specifically how molecules act in solids, liquids, and gas. The first was a Max Axiom Graphic Novel (I love this science series-the graphics are so engaging) and a book from a Foss Kit. Then we went over some key vocabulary: matter, molecules, mass, volume, boiling point, melting point, condense, and evaporate. I typed these out to place on the bulletin board so they can be reminded of the terminology, along with a cycle of how the states of matter change. Then came project time (Yay!): students made a tri-fold and labeled each column one of the three states of matter. Then under that they needed to write the definition of that state of matter. Under that they needed to draw a representation of that type of matter, in which they would glue fruit loops (molecules) in that drawing the proper way they would act. For example in the solid they may draw a box and the fruit loops would be tight together looking they are locked in place. For gas they may draw a balloon and inside fruit loops would be dispersed everywhere and spread out. Under the drawing they had to list a minimum of three examples of each type of matter. When they were done I put their finished product on a bulletin board. The students seemed to have learned something and they had fun, which as a teacher I couldn't ask for anything more.

Picture Time:
This student commented that stars are made of gas.

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