Wednesday, April 23, 2014

States of Matter - Liquids

Physical Science - States of Matter


The Physical Science album is a precursor to the other 3-6 Science albums. I'm using the KHT Montessori albums, which I love! We started with the 3 States of Matter - solid, liquid and gas. This was not entirely new since we had played with water and done several experiments in the past with ice, water and steam.

We had some friends over to join us for our work period. I started by introducing the definition of "matter" as anything you could touch or that takes up space. I asked the kids for examples of things they could touch (the couch, the floor, a book) and we talked about how all of those things are made of matter. I showed them the matter tray with a container of water for liquid, air for gas, and a rock for solid. I passed the containers around so they could see the differences. Then we listened to this States of Matter song on YouTube.

Next, we talked about a couple of the properties of liquids. Liquids don't have a definite shape, and will take the shape of the container they are poured into. Liquids are a type of matter, so they do take up space. Liquids also have a definite volume. You can measure the volume of a liquid, and that volume will stay constant if you transfer the liquid to a new container.

I set up a water station at the table (with lots of towels - this would be better outside if it hadn't been so cold that day!). I had a large bucket of water in the middle of the table, and several trays around the table where kids could sit and experiment with pouring water into different shapes and sizes of containers.

We were so involved in the activities that I didn't get any pictures (how did that happen??). Here are a few examples of things you could do:

Measure the volume of a liquid, then pour into a different container.
See how the shape changes, but volume stays the same.

Pour liquids into containers with very different sizes or shapes.

Play with different sized/shaped containers in the pool or bathtub.

Use a water table to fill lots of containers with water. Practice pouring the liquid from
one container to another to see how liquids flow and take the shape of their container.

See more Science activities here.

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