Properties and Changes of Materials

Project Overview

We began our ‘Properties and Changes of Materials’ topic by comparing everyday materials’ qualities, such as: hardness, permeability, absorbency, flexibility, transparency, strength and response to magnets. Then, throughout the half-term, children worked scientifically to investigate thermal insulation, electrical conductivity and absorption. For each scientific question, the pupils thought about how to design the experiment to test their theories, the method they would use which variables they would control to keep the experiment fair.  With each investigation, a prediction was made, and after completing the test, children discussed the results and concluded their findings.

What The Student Says

“I was very excited about doing my own experiment to see which kitchen towel was the best one. I predicted the premium brand would be the best but I was interested to see how good the cheap brands were. I found that even though the expensive sheets were the best, one of the cheap brands did quite good job too.” – 5NH pupil  

“Doing our own investigations, how we want to do them is really fun! I liked testing all the different objects tofind out their properties.” – 5AO pupil

What skills were developed?

The children have:

  • compared and grouped everyday materials based on their properties
  • given reasons for uses of the everyday materials based on fair and reliable tests
  • thought about how to keep their testing fair
  • thought about how to enquire scientifically to answer the question they pose
  • recorded, represented and concluded their findings with increasing accuracy
  • worked as a valued member of a team
  • asked scientific questions

What The Teacher Says

Over the last half-term, the children have gradually built up their knowledge and curiosity about how and what  to investigate in our science lessons. With this information, pupils showed off their investigative skills at the end of half term to take ownership of their own experiment.                                                                  I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the children work practically and as part of a team. They discussed ideas, tried out and adjusted their thoughts as needed. 

– Miss Holmes, 5NH Class Teacher