Lesson plan

Matter: Sink or Float

Sink or float? This simple lesson has students guess the densities of different objects and place them into water to test their predictions.
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Grade Subject

Students will learn the relative densities of different objects.

(10 minutes)
  • Ask the students what items they think will sink or float.
  • Don't make it specific to the items that you are going to use. Let the students give you a list of random items they think will sink or float.
(15 minutes)
  • Take out the chart with each object listed.
  • Have the students reflect on whether they think each object with sink or float.
  • Take votes to see who thinks the item will sink and who thinks the item will float.
  • Post the chart to use later for closing the lesson.
(10 minutes)
  • Pick two of the objects on the Sink or Float worksheet and test out the predictions with the students.
  • Organize students into small teams.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students work with their team to finish the rest of the sink or float activity and determine whether their predictions were correct.
  • Enrichment: Have advanced students journal about other objects that might be on the border for the sink or float discussion.
  • Support: Give struggling students one-on-one assistance over the course of the lesson.
(15 minutes)
  • Have you students write down about what they predicted and what the outcome was.
(5 minutes)
  • Review the predictions. Make changes to the chart if needed.

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