Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic, Density, and addresses standards about identifying properties of matter and understanding density as it relates to mass and volume. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of creative projects.

Step 1: ACTIVATE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE

Model of density for the class:

  • Add water to a glass container
  • Add vegetable oil, honey, and more water to the container

Ask:

  • I’ve put oil, honey, and water into this container with water. Which is at the top? Middle? Bottom?
  • Why are they separate? What don’t they mix?

Step 2: BUILD BACKGROUND

  • Read aloud the description below the Movie player.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding.
  • Have students play the States of Matter Game then pair them and have them share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: APPLY

Students synthesize their ideas and express them through one or more of the following creative projects. They can work individually or collaborate.  

  • Make-a-Movie: Make a movie that demonstrates how the density of an object changes when its temperature changes.
  • Make-a-Map: Make a concept map identifying various cause and effect relationships as they are associated with density.
  • Creative Coding: Code a comic that chronicles an atom’s response to the temperature of the substance changing.

Step 4: REFLECT & ASSESS 

  • Reflect: After sharing creative projects with each other, students reflect on what they’ve learned about density. Prompt them by asking questions such as:
    • What can cause the density of an object to change?
    • Why might someone assume that a giant block would be heavier than a small block, and what would cause that assumption to be wrong?
    • How does an object’s ability to float in water relate to its density? 

Step 5: EXTENDED LEARNING

Continue exploring properties of matter concepts with BrainPOP’s Matter & Chemistry Unit.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

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