Properties of Materials Unit Plan

Unit Plan

Properties of Materials Unit Plan

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This Chemical Sciences unit investigates the observable properties of materials. Descriptive vocabulary is explored as well as the suitability of materials for different purposes.

It consists of 6 lessons of approximately 60 minutes duration.

The sequence of lessons and suggested time frames should be regarded as a guide only; teachers should pace lessons in accordance with the individual learning needs of their class.

For some of the lessons in this unit, students explore materials at various stations. Additional adult supervision at some of these stations would be beneficial.

An assessment task for monitoring student understanding of the unit objectives is included and will require an additional lesson.

Teachers are encouraged to collect samples of students’ work throughout the unit to add to a learning portfolio. These can also be used to assess students’ understanding of the unit objectives.

 Overview

Objectives

  • To explore the properties of materials and to develop vocabulary to describe them.
  • To identify the material objects are made of and to sort them in various ways.
  • To develop an understanding of the suitability of certain materials for different purposes.
  • To understand that some materials provide better shade than others.
  • To understand that some materials are more water resistant than others.

This Science unit provides excellent opportunities for cross-curricular integration. Look for ways to meaningfully integrate the content of the unit with other learning areas e.g. Literacy and The Arts.

Prior to commencing the unit, develop a classroom display which focuses on the properties of materials. Display word wall vocabulary and learning goals that the students will engage with throughout the unit to stimulate their learning. For examples of additional teaching resources to display in your classroom, browse the Material World  collection on the Teach Starter website.

Many of the resources which accompany this unit plan will need to be prepared prior to teaching. For this reason, it is advised that teachers browse through all lessons before commencing the unit.

It is suggested that several weeks prior to commencing this unit, a note is sent home to parents requesting that students bring in recycled materials to be used throughout the unit. A large variety (and quantity) of resources will be needed for exploration and construction. This will take some time to collect and arrange, however, some of the resources can be re-used several times throughout the unit.

 Lessons

60 minutes
Lesson 1

Diving Into Description

A 60 minute lesson in which students explore the properties of materials and develop vocabulary to describe them.

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60 minutes
Lesson 2

Let's Sort!

A 60 minute lesson in which students identify the material objects are made of and sort them in various ways.

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60 minutes
Lesson 3

What Works Best?

A 60 minute lesson in which students develop an understanding of the suitability of certain materials for different purposes.

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60 minutes
Lesson 4

Give Me Some Shade

A 60 minute lesson in which students investigate materials to determine how much shade they provide.

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60 minutes
Lesson 5

Keep Me Dry

A 60 minute lesson in which students investigate materials to determine how water resistant they are.

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60 minutes
Lesson 6 (Assessment)

Making Monsters

A 60 minute lesson in which students design and create a 3D monster using objects made from materials with different properties.

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  NSW Curriculum alignment

  Victorian Curriculum alignment

  Australian Curriculum alignment


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