Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Magnets and Matter

In the previous activity children observed that a magnet can attract a paper clip(s).
In this experiment, we will observe if magnets can attract a paper clip(s) through 3 different forms of matter solid (plastic), liquid (water) and gas (air).

Frog Magnet Bought at a Hardware Store!


Have the students make a prediction before each activity.

First let's try the solid (plastic). Put 1 or a couple of paper clips in a plastic cup. Then hold the magnet against the outside of the cup? Observe what happens. Does the magnet attract the paper clip(s) through the plastic?

Second, let's try the gas (air). Hold the magnet over the cup which has a paper clip in it. You may have to lower it into the cup a bit depending on the strength of the magnet. Observe. Does the magnet attract the paper clip(s)?

Third, let's try the liquid (water). Add just a little water to a cup that has 1 or more paper clips inside. Again lower the magnet into the cup (but not into the water). Observe. How did the magnet do? Did it pick up the paper clip(s) out of the water?

Other solids that you could try are paper and aluminum foil!
Have fun!

Children should sketch pictures of the experiments in their science notebooks and record their results.

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