Heating and Cooling Materials

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What happens when you heat and cool materials.

Lesson idea. This is a plan for a commonly-used activity on materials. Year 2 pupils are asked to predict what will happen when familiar materials are put in a hot place and a cool place. With the teacher's guidance, they test materials and are asked what makes their tests fair.

Teaching approach. In this inquiry(ta)-based lesson plan, students devise a ‘fair way’ to compare (mostly) physical changes in materials such as cheese and chocolate. They ask and answer questions about how to heat the materials and about using materials of the same size and shape. They also predict how substances may change and observe what actually happens. The purpose of the lesson is to both support Year 2 students work on changing materials and to develop their ideas about ‘fair tests’. The activity thus offers an opportunity to assess(ta) how well students plan a test and observe change. (edit)

Resource details
Title Heating and Cooling Materials
Topic Materials
Teaching approach
Learning Objectives
  • Describing how some everyday materials change when they are heated or cooled.
  • Observing heating or cooling materials and answer questions about them.
  • Using what students know to answer questions.
  • Recognizing when a comparison is unfair.
Age of students / grade
Resource Number


Files and resources to view and download

Download the Word version of the resource here Heating and Cooling Materials - student contribution - SC0005.doc (info), or check the resource online here Lesson

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