Materials and Motion

Grade K

The Materials and Motion Module provides experiences that heighten students’ awareness, curiosity, and understanding of the physical world as they observe and compare the properties of various wood, paper, and fabric by performing a number of tests and interactions. Students explore the concept of force and motion by observing and comparing a variety of pushes and pulls, the speed and motion of moving objects, and collisions.

Investigation 1: Getting to Know Wood
Students work with five different wood samples to observe their properties. They begin with free exploration, go on a hunt for matching samples, drop water on the samples, and float them in basins. They test the wood to find out how many paper clips it takes to sink it, then organize their results by making a concrete graph. They simulate the manufacture of two kinds of woods.
Investigation 2: Getting to Know Paper
Students observe and compare the properties of 10 kinds of paper and go on a hunt for matching samples. They compare how well the papers fold and which have the best surface for writing. They test papers for absorption, then soak the samples overnight. Students learn how to recycle paper and make new paper from old.
Investigation 3: Getting to Know Fabric
Students observe and compare the properties of 10 kinds of fabric and search for different ways fabrics are used. They take apart fabrics to learn how they are woven from threads. Students investigate how fabrics interact with water. They soil, dye, wash, and dry fabrics to learn about temporary and permanent changes. They observe the warming effect of the Sun and design a structure to reduce the effect of heating.
Investigation 4: Getting Things to Move
Students investigate the strength of pushes and pulls needed to move objects. They use gravity to investigate collisions. Students find ways to change the strength and direction of the pull on a rolling ball to meet design challenges. Finally, they change the strength of the push on a balloon rocket to explore cause and effect.