Facts of the Matter

Unit Plan

Facts of the Matter

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9 x Lessons | Suitable for Grades: 3 - 5

This Properties of Matter unit explores the concept that solids, liquids, and gases have different observable properties and behave in different ways.

It consists of 9 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.

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 activate students' prior knowledge of solids, liquids, and gases.
  • To introduce students to key terms and concepts related to matter and states of matter.
  • To identify the observable characteristics of solids and how they behave in different ways.
  • To identify the observable characteristics of liquids and how they behave in different ways.
  • To observe that gases have mass and take up space.
  • To explore the way solids, liquids, and gases change in different situations.
  • To recognize that substances exist in different states depending on the temperature.
  • To explore how knowledge of states of matter and their changes can help inform practices and decision-making.
  • To recognize that not all substances can be easily classified on the basis of their observable properties.

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.

Before starting the unit, develop a classroom display which focuses on states of matter. Display posters, 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 Properties & Changes in Matter collection on the Teach Starter website.

The lessons and science experiments within this unit are structured in accordance with the scientific method. Ensure that the students are familiar with this process before starting the unit. A comprehensive lesson plan addressing the concepts of fair testing in Science can be downloaded here.

Some 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 starting the unit.

 Lessons

60 minutes
Lesson 1

What's the Matter?

A 60-minute lesson designed to activate students' prior knowledge of solids, liquids, and gases.

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60 minutes
Lesson 2

Matter Matters!

A 60-minute lesson designed to introduce students to key terms and concepts related to matter and states of matter.

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60 minutes
Lesson 3

Solids

A 60-minute lesson in which students will identify the observable characteristics of solids and how they behave in different ways.

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60 minutes
Lesson 4

Liquids

A 60-minute lesson in which students will identify the observable characteristics of liquids and how they behave in different ways.

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60 minutes
Lesson 5

Gases

A 60-minute lesson in which students will observe that gases have mass and take up space.

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60 minutes
Lesson 6

Changing States of Matter

A 60-minute lesson in which students will explore the way solids, liquids, and gases change in different situations.

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60 minutes
Lesson 7

Going, Going, Gone!

A 60-minute lesson in which students will recognize that substances exist in different states depending on the temperature.

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60 minutes
Lesson 8

Knowing Matters!

A 60-minute lesson in which students will explore how knowledge of states of matter and their changes can help inform practices and decision making.

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60 minutes
Lesson 9

Slime - Solid, Liquid, or Gas?

A 60-minute lesson in which students will recognize that not all substances can be easily classified on the basis of their observable properties.

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60 minutes
Lesson 10 (Assessment)

Understanding States of Matter

An assessment task designed to assess students' knowledge and understanding of: solids, liquids, and gases; their properties; and their behavior.

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