Magnetism activities & lesson plans

Overview

A plan to review and facilitate deeper understanding of magnetism.

Activities explore scientific experimentation and magnets, different kinds of magnets, what they interact with, what they interact through, their strength, view of a magnetic field, strength of different magnets and their combinations.

A plan designed for learners who have prior knowledge in

Background & related study topics resources:

  • Interactions can be at a distance and touching.
  • Cause and effect.

Intended learnings & learners thinkings

See for more information on what to include in planning

Big ideas, concepts, facts, and outcomes

Concept sequence map used for planning

Content concepts or outcomes
(Source concepts & misconceptions)

Big ideas and specific outcomes:

  • Every magnet has a magnetic field, which interacts with the magnetic field of other magnets and some other objects.

Concepts and facts

  • Magnets interact with each other and materials that have iron, steel, cobalt, or nickel.
  • Magnets do not all look alike and vary in strengths.
  • Even if magnets are the same size and shape, they may vary in magnetic strength.
  • Magnets strength can decrease over time.
  • Magnets have magnetic fields.
  • Poles are the strongest points on a magnet.
  • All magnets have two poles.
  • Opposite poles attract.
  • Same poles repel.
  • If a compass breaks or a magnet is broken in half, you have two magnets, each with poles.

Outcome

Use and describe magnets interactions with magnets and with iron, steel, cobalt, and nickel. Describe and explain interactions of magnets, magnetic materials, attract, repel, magnetic field, poles, compass, strength of magnetic fields.

  • Describe different kinds of magnets.
  • Categorize materials as attract to a magnet or not.
  • Describe steel and iron attract to magnets.
  • Describe magnets attract to other magnets.
  • Describe not all metals are attracted to a magnet.
  • Describe magnetism will interact through non magnetic objects.
  • Describe a magnet has strong points (poles) and weaker points.
  • Describe a magnet has a magnetic area (magnetic field) around it.
  • Make and explain a rule on how magnetics interact with other magnets.
  • Determine magnets have two poles and they can attract or repel.

Science inquiry and processes

Big ideas: Explanations are created from evidence and tell how different objects interact.. See also Concepts & misconceptions

Magnetic fields can not be observed directly. Therefore, observations of how magnets interact with other magnets or with different materials, (magnetic and non magnetic) is necessary to collect and analyze information to learn about magnetism and explain how it works. Presenting opportunities to understand how science is used to understand and explain the world.

Related concepts and facts

Outcome -

Use science processes to review and inform their understanding o magnetism.

Specific outcomes -

  • Determine relative strengths of different magnets.
  • Make and explain a rule on how magnetics interact with other magnets.
  • Plan an experiment to explore a question about the strength of magnets.
  • Collect data to find the average number of paper clips a magnet can lift.
  • Explore the number of paper clips different amounts of magnets will hold.

Scoring guides suggestions (rubric)

Magnetism (scoring guide)

Top level

  • Explains magnetism is energy which interacts in predictable ways. Magnets have matter that is arranged so their magnetic fields are strong enough to interact with other magnets and materials (iron, nickel, cobalt) whose matter is also arranged to interact with magnetic fields.
  • Explains magnetism as I don't know, or as something with magic like qualities: like a magic wand, magic spell, or something else.

Lower level

Strategies to achieve educational learnings

Instructional background resources

  • Learning cycle instructional method
  • Human development of intellectual thinking - tasks to use with learners across all ages, directions, materials, variety of responses with explanations.
  • Learning theory - how humans learn from infant to adult. A constructivist model with a Piagetian base. Includes learning procedure, flow chart, variables that effect learning, what changes & doesn't change, explanations for children's thinking as naive understandings or misconceptions, physical activities that develop intelligence, logic and other thinking skills. Explains development over time:

Instructional Procedure

Pedagogical Overview

Activities Sequence to provide sufficient opportunities for students to achieve the targeted outcomes.

Make sure students have the prior knowledge identified in the background information.

  1. Activity 1 - Stick to it
  2. Activity 2 - Magnets and Metals
  3. Activity 3 - Through it all
  4. Activity 4 - Testing the strength of magnets
  5. Activity 5 - Iron filings to explore magnetic poles
  6. Activity 6 - Iron filings to represent a magnetic field
  7. Activity 7 - Poles and rules of attraction
  8. Activity 8 - Flexing those Magnet Muscles! 
  9. Activity 9 - Fish and clips
  10. Activity 10 - Holding power with multiple magnets
  11. Activity 11 - Floating Magnets

Focus question

Unit focus question

What is magnetism and how can we understand it?

Sub focus questions:

Physical science dimension

  • What are magnets?
  • What can magnets do?
  • What attraction do magnets have?
  • What materials attract to magnets?
  • Do magnets attract to all metals?
  • Will magnetism interact with objects through other objects?
  • How strong are different magnets?
  • How do magnets interact with other magnets?
  • Doe size of a magnet effect its energy?
  • What do you think will happen if two or more magnets are used to lift objects?
  • How many paper clips can a magnet hold (catch - see fish & clips)?
  • Does combining magnets increase the strength of attraction?
  • Can a magnetic field hold another magnet in thin air?

Science inquiry & process dimensions

  • How do you find out more about magnets?
  • How do we know something is accurate?
  • How do we understand?
  • How do you find out more about magnetic forces (magnetic field) beyond a magnet?

Resources and Materials

Lesson Plans

Activity Stick to it

Kristin Warner & Mike Edward

Materials:

  • Supply of sticky notes in 2 colors, magnets (one per student). Normal items in a room.

Focus questions:

  1. What materials attract to magnets?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Categorize materials as attract to a magnet or not.
  2. Describe steel and iron attract to magnets.
  3. Describe magnets attract to other magnets.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. .

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Demonstrate magnetism by hiding a magnet in your pocket, then casually bringing a metal object (scissors) to the outside of the pocket. 
  2. Remove you hand and let the scissors remain stuck.
  3. Have the learners discuss what happened.
  4. Distribute magnets, so they can test items from their desk and around the room.
  5. Ask. How could you record data? Chart, Journal,
  6. What kind of information will be collected? Whether the material is attracted to the magnet or not.
  7. How could we organize this information? In a table.
  8. Have them label the objects by making a class table or list. Object - Material - Attract - doesn't attract
  9. Invite them to test objects and record their results.
  10. Write the name of each object, test each object, and record the results.
  11. When all groups are finished, gather all students together.
  12. Record the information so all can see.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Using the information collected from this experiment.
  2. Ask. What can they conclude about the kinds of objects that will stick (interact) to a magnet? Do all metal objects stick to a magnet? Shiny objects? Many will predict that anything made of metal will stick to the magnet, DON'T correct this now. More information from the next activity will help refine their understanding.
  3. Discuss their ideas and compile and display a list of the characteristics of things that stick to magnets.
  4. Ask. How did the table or list help them organize the observational evidence so they could look for a pattern?
  5. Where else could they use a that idea?
  6. How do we know our ideas are accurate or right?
  7. To what types of materials do magnets attract? If the student say metal, that is okay for now. Next activity will refine to iron, steel, cobalt, by eliminating other metals.
  8. Ask. How are these objects alike or different.
  9. When you hold a magnet near a magnetic object, what happens to the magnet?
  10. What happens to the object?

Discovery- (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Next activity explore more materials that are not normally laying around a classroom.

Activity Magnets and Metals

Lisa Ristau, Rachel Engdahl,Jessica Truex, & Todd Schumatcher

Materials:

  • Paper plates (one for each pair of learners), magnets (one for each learner), objects made from varying materials: aluminum, silver, gold, copper, iron nails, plastic, glass, stone, and cloth, etc. If possible one object of each material for each group. If not, discuss how to pass items around. For example I wore a class ring that could be said was gold and brought a silver spoon. Passed the spoon around and walked around the room and let each group test the ring.

Focus questions:

  1. Do magnets attract to all metals?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Describe not all metals are attracted to a magnet.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Ask. What will happen when they touch the objects on the paper plates with a magnet?
  2. Listen to all responses.
  3. Ask. How they could record their data?
  4. Move to groups.
  5. Give each group a paper plate with the objects listed above on it.
  6. Give each person a magnet.
  7. Let them experiment and record their data.
  8. Ask. What are your results?
  9. Have them share their data and chart it so all can see.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Define magnetic and non magnetic.
  2. Can explain most people know magnets attract iron. Fewer know so do nickel and cobalt. Steel has iron in it so it attracts to magnets. Objects of aluminum, copper and lead do not. Could also discuss different type of magnets and how they are made.
  3. Ask. How or where could you use what you learned?

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask.

Activity Through it all

Kristin Warner and Mike Edward 

Materials:

  • For each group: Magnet, ruler, tape, paper clip, book, catalog, or other books with numbered pages.
  • Discovery materials - For each group: Magnets, paper clips, wooden ruler, cardboard, fabric, tin foil, wax paper, oak tag, clear plastic cup, tin can, shoe, plastic block, glass jar, Paper plate, magnets, paper clip, baby food jar, wooden piece, pieces of cloth, piece of aluminum foil, magnetic can top without sharp edges, and container of water

Focus questions:

  1. Will magnetism interact with objects through other objects?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Describe magnetism will interact through non magnetic objects.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Test different objects to see if magnetism will interact with another object through different materials.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Ask. Will a magnet attract through other materials?
  2. Paper?
  3. How many pages do you think a magnet will interact with a paper clip?
  4. How can we find out?
  5. Create a procedure.
    1. Open each catalog to page one.
    2. Place the magnet, on top of a ruler, on the left hand page, turn one page, and place the clip on top of the magnet, so that by moving the ruler the magnet will or will not move the clip.
    3. Continue to turn pages and move the clip until the clip will no longer move with the magnet.
    4. Count pages or note page number and divide by two (because each page has two sides). Record the number. 
  6. Share observations with the whole class.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Have learners discuss the affecting variables (magnets, clips, style of pages, and strategies used).
  2. Ask. Will a magnet attract through other materials?
  3. How can we find out?

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask. What will happen if objects are placed between a magnet and a metal paper clip.
  2. Share ideas.
  3. Ask. How could they explore their ideas?
  4. Discuss and decide on a procedure.
  5. Conduct their investigation and record their data.
  6. Hand out supplies to each group of 3-4 students
  7. Let the them experiment and record their data.
  8. Have the groups share their ideas.
  9. Ask them to explain their results. Have groups exchange magnets, materials, or test strategies and record results.
  10. Have them write in their journals two sets: those through which the magnet could attract the clip, and those through which it could not. 
  11. Have them write an explanation about their results, why certain materials allowed an interaction (attraction).
  12. Have the them share and discuss their results with the whole class.

 

  1. Ask. How could you design an experiment to find a magnet’s strength? 
  2. Have them design and go to activity ******** where they can perform their experiment or use the example.

 

Activity Testing the strength of magnets

Kristin Warner and Mike Edward 

Materials:

  • Magnets (one of varying strength for each pair of students), handful of paperclips (for each pair of students)

Focus questions:

  1. How strong are different magnets?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Determine relative strengths of different magnets.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize

  1. Place two paper clips linked together on a magnet and show it to the learners.
  2. Ask the pairs to predict the total number of paperclips they could link to their magnet.
  3. Give each group a magnet and several paperclips.
  4. Ask. How could test the strength of their magnet.
  5. Agree on a procedure and how to record their data.
  6. Let them explore and record their data.
  7. Have them share their data and record it so all can view it.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Ask. What do the results mean?
  2. What does it tell about magnets? magnets have different strengths. Sometimes a bigger magnet isn't stronger.

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask.

 

Activity - Iron filings to explore magnetic poles

by Lisa Ristau and Rachel Engdahl

Materials:

  • Plastic bottle with iron shavings (per group), variety of magnets (bar magnets, if possible), paper, pencil, pen, lab notes.

Focus questions:

  1. How do you find out more about magnets?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Describe a magnet has strong points (poles) and weaker points.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Explore different shapes of magnets with iron filing in a bottle to discover poles.
  3. Complete notebook.

 

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. What will happen when the bottle of iron filings are brought close to a magnet?
  2. Students will receive and experiment with a plastic bottle, a magnet, and some iron shavings or iron filings to demonstrate the magnetic attractions.
  3. Tell. Do NOT open the bottles.
  4. Observe what happens and record/draw on paper (observe a pattern of iron filings that are interacting with a magnetic field. Or a model of a magnetic field)
  5. Tap the bottle lightly with your finger.
  6. Try different magnets in different positions.
  7. Shake or move the bottle to distribute the iron filings for better observations.
  8. Observe what happens now and record and draw the location of the iron filing relative to each magnet.
  9. Let the group explore and record their findings.
  10. Share finding and let them draw their magnets interaction with the iron filings so all can see.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Bring the class together.
  2. Discuss what is observed.
  3. What evidence do you have that suggest the magnet is interacting with the iron filings? they move, are held against the bottle, supported instead of falling or sliding down. 
  4. Does the magnet interact at a distance? yes
  5. Is the magnet really holding it? kinda not It is the magnetic energy
  6. What really is interacting with the iron filings? magnetic field, but Need both the magnet and the iron filings to see an interaction.
  7. This discussion will lead to the idea of a magnetic field.

NEXT

  1. Did you observe where the most iron filings are being attracted to the magnet?
  2. Refer to their drawings.
  3. Have them mark where there is more filings.
  4. Should notice there are two areas on each magnet.
  5. Invent poles and all magnets have two poles
  6. Tell them scientist call these areas the poles of the magnet.
  7. Where? Depends on the magnet. Bar magnets at the ends. Horse shoe magnets at the end of the shoe. Ring magnets (look like a donut) in the hole. Round magnets in the center.
  8. Draw magnet shapes and mark the points where they are strongest.
  9. Ask why they think there are two stronger areas?

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. What else might we do to study magnetism?
  2. What other ways can we use evidence to explain events?
  3. Ask. How can we explore magnetism beyond a magnet?

Activity - Iron filings to represent a magnetic field

Jessica Truex , Todd Schumatcher, Lisa Ristau & Rachel Engdahl

Materials:

  • Iron shavings (per group), Several kinds of magnets (bar magnets, horse shoe, ring, ... ), oak tag, paper, pencil pen, Styrofoam plate and plastic wrap.

Suggestion. Instead of pouring iron filings on a paper with a magnet below. A Styrofoam plate can be used. Pour iron filings on the Styrofoam plate and seal it with plastic wrap and tape.

Focus questions:

  1. How do you find out more about magnetic forces (magnetic field) beyond a magnet?
  2. How does the distribution of the iron filings effect your model of magnetism?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Describe a magnet has a magnetic area (magnetic field) around it.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Explore magnetic fields beyond a magnet to suggest a field extends well beyond its surface.
  3. Complete notebook.

 

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Ask. How can we explore the magnetic field beyond the surface of the magnet?
  2. If learners don't suggest iron filings .... hint ...
  3. We can use the metal filings. Either - demonstrate how to put a magnet under a piece of oak tag, pour the iron filings on top. Have a tray to collect the filings so they can be returned to the original container when done. OR demonstrate how to place a magnet under the Styrofoam iron filings container.
  4. Ask. Are there any questions/
  5. How can we record their data?
  6. Collect data for different magnets.
  7. Share data on board so all can see.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Bring the class together.
  2. Ask. What does this suggest? magnetism extends beyond the surface of a magnet. It seems to travel from one pole of the magnet to the other.

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask. What would happen if

 

Activity Poles and rules of attraction

Kristin Warner, Mike Edward, Lisa Ristau & Rachel Engdahl

Materials:

  • Small bar magnets, Assorted objects such as paper clips, coins, straws, washers, crayons, pieces of aluminum foil
  • magnets with red and blue dots on their poles so red and blue attract and red - and blue - blue repel OR red and blue sticky dots (businesses use to color code files) or red and blue paint for students to color poles.

Focus questions:

  1. How do magnets interact with other magnets?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Make and explain a rule on how magnetics interact with other magnets.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Draw one tile from a sock with three colored tiles.
  3. Chart & discuss results.
  4. Identify possible outcomes and the number of possible combinations.
  5. Draw four times from a sock with three colored tiles.
  6. Chart & discuss results.
  7. Identify possible outcomes and the number of possible combinations.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Most of our explorations have been with magnets and other materials.
  2. How do magnets interact with other magnets? Attract and repel
  3. How can we explore and find out? Play with two magnets.
  4. Give each pair of learners two magnets and let them explore.
  5. Ask. How do the magnets interact with each other? It pushes away sometimes and attracts sometimes.
  6. If they have already discovered that magnets attract and repel, then review the vocabulary. Interact or don't interact, attract, move together, repel, move apart.

TWO WAYS Lesson can go depending if magnetic poles are color coded or not.

Color coded magnets ...

  1. If color coded, Ask. Did you noticed which colors attracted each other and which colors repelled? Opposite colors attract and the same colors repel.
  2. Let's take a quick check.
  3. Take your magnets, check their interactions, and record them in a matrix.
  Red Blue
Red    
Blue    

 

Magnets not color coded ...

  1. Let's see if we can find a rule more specific than poles can either attract or repel.
  2. Let's start with the fact that magnets have two poles.
  3. With this being true, then how many ways can two poles be placed facing each other? four ways in which two magnets could be put together
  4. Let's check this by drawing a magnet and color its poles - one blue and the other red.
  5. Okay. Now if we have two magnets, what are all the combinations for the poles interacting? r-r; r-b; b-r; b-b.
  6. Now to find out what happens with these different interactions we have to label a couple of magnets so we can keep track of which of the four interactions we are exploring.
  7. Will need to discuss how to label the magnets after the first one. For example. If we randomly label 20 or whatever number of magnet you have, then Some would attract r-r & b-b and others might attract r-b.
  8. One possible way is to say ...
  9. If we put a red dot on one side, then what does that mean?
  10. If red is one kind of side, end, or pole, then what defines another that is the same?
  11. A pole that attracts to it or one that repels it? listen to all answers ... then ...
  12. SAY. Historically Ben Franklin had this problem with electricity (static) and he just picked one (negative). With magnetism people decided that like p0les repel and unlike poles attract.
  13. Distribute magnets and have them with label the magnets accordingly or if the have magnets already colored, have them explore different combinations of poles or colors coming together.
  14. After they are labeled, suggest they quickly check to make sure some weren't mistakenly labeled, by filling out the chart.
      Red Blue
    Red    
    Blue    

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Display data so all can view. 
  2. What did we discover? Opposite colors attract(r-b; b-r) and the same colors repel (b-b; r-r).

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask. What if we had used red and yellow?
  2. What if we used - positive and negative; or north and south; or north seeking and south seeking poles?
  3. Pick one and complete the matrix.
  . .
.    
.    

 

  1. Let's do an activity where we pretend to be magnets.
  2. Say. Pretend you have a purple sticker on your right hand and a pink sticker on your left hand.
  3. If everyone were standing inside a circle.
  4. What would be the rule for being able to give fist bumps? bumps l-r; r-l; no bumps r-r; l-l
  5. Have two demonstrate.
  6. the rule that if they are facing the same direction you cannot touch each other.
  7. What happens if three are together?
  8. Have three demonstrate?
  9. Are there different ways?
  10. Four ....
  11. More ....
  12. Pattern?
  13. Summarize how magnetism will or won’t attract.
  14. What evidence do you have to support your claims?
  15. How did the matrix help with the observational evidence?
  16. Where might we use the information that we learned?

 

Activity Flexing those Magnet Muscles! 

Lisa Ristau and Rachel Engdahl

Materials:

  • Magnets of different sizes and shapes, paperclips or washers,

Focus questions:

  1. Doe size of a magnet effect its energy?
  2. What do you think will happen if two or more magnets are used to lift objects?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Plan an experiment to explore a question about the strength of magnets.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Decide how many times to flip the coins (50).
  3. Flip coins and collect the data.
  4. Chart & discuss results.
  5. Identify all possible outcomes and the number of possible combinations.
  6. Describe both theoretical and experimental probability for the exploration.
  7. Complete notebook.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Do you think that different sizes and shapes of magnets effect their magnetic energy?
  2. How can we explore these ideas and come up with a conclusion?
  3. What hypothesis or question could we test?
    • Larger magnets will pick up more. Will larger magnets pick up more?
    • Smaller magnets will pick up ...
    • The size of a magnet will …
  4. Each group writes a question or hypothesis to explore.
  5. Example
    • Decide how to determine the size of magnets. Use mass?
    • Make a pile of paperclips or washers.
    • Choose one magnet and place it on the pile.
    • Slowly lift it out of the pile and record the number of ... it picks up.
    • Repeat steps with the remaining magnets. 
    • Re pile the pile of ... and repeat.
    • Record results.
    • Compare the results by the size of the magnet.
  • Share result so all can see.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Discuss the results.
  2. What can you conclude about the size of a magnet and the force of the magnetic field?

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. Ask. What do you think will happen if two or more magnets are used to lift objects? Multiple magnets will pick up more than one magnet.

 

Activity Fish and clips

Kristin Warner & Mike Edward

Materials:

  • 2 brown lunch-size-bags (pools), 25 big paper clips (big fish), 35 little paper clips (little fish), 15 string (tied to any type of magnet - HOWEVER all ever all should be the same if going to compare catches with different poles), attached to dowel or non-sharp pencils (fishing pole)

Focus questions:

  1. How many paper clips can a magnet catch?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Collect data to find the average number of paper clips a magnet can lift.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Challenge the learners to create a plan to determine the average number of paper clips a magnet can lift.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Ask. Have you ever gone fishing?
  2. Describe the process of fishing. List characteristics on the board. 
  3. Show them a big and little paper clip.
  4. Ask. Will a magnet pick more big or little paper clips?
  5. Why do you think?
  6. Ask. Do you want to fish for clips?
  7. Would you fish for big paper clips or little?
  8. Well you are going to fish for both.
  9. Let's make a procedure to use to fish.
    • Put 25 paper clips inside a paper bag.
    • Dangle the magnet inside the paper bag. (Decide to just drop it and lift or drop, drag, lift or other.)
    • Lift up and out of bag. If clips fall outside of bag, they count, inside don't.
    • Count clips and record the number beside the trial number.
    • Return the clips to the bag.
    • Repeat 3 times.
    • Then do the same for large clips.
    • Then mix large and small and do the same.
  10. Go fish ...
  11. Make a table on the board and have each group record their catches according to: Big, Little, and Mixed.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Discuss which catch was more, less, in between.
  2. How much more, less, ...
  3. Write a math sentence using the greater than or less than symbols.
  4. Could find averages.
  5. Discuss if the differences is significant?
  6. Ask. What do you think caused a difference? 
  7. Speculate if the mass or weight of the three is different. Can suggest to find the weight or mass of the average for each of the three. small, large, & mixed.

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

Activity Holding power with multiple magnets

Kristin Warner & Mike Edward

Materials:

  • For each group: 3 ceramic ring magnets, 1 large paper clip, with larger end bent into a hook, 70 paper clips, balance scale and gram masses.

Focus questions:

  1. Does combining magnets increase the strength of attraction?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Explore the number of paper clips different amounts of magnets will hold.
  2. Make a conclusion about the strength of combined magnets.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.
  2. Challenge the learners to create a plan to determine if increasing the number of magnets will increase the number of paper clips lifted.
  3. Experiment and make a conclusion about the combined strength of magnets.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Show learners a magnet with hook and paper clip.
  2. Ask. How many paper clips do you think a magnet can lift?
  3. Would two magnets separately or two magnets together hold more?
  4. What about three, four, ...
  5. Ask. How can we see what happens?
  6. Decide on a procedure to answer the questions?
    • Make a set up of a magnet with a paper clip hook. Paper clip bend so it will stick to a magnet (magnetically) and paper clips or washers can be hung onto the clip.
    • Hang paper clips on the hook one at a time.
    • Continue until the hook falls off the magnet.
    • Decide if each group should do multiple trials.
    • Count the clips that were on the hook, and write the number of clips in a table.
    • Repeat the activity with two magnets ...
    • Repeat again with three ...
  7. Implement the procedure
  8. Have groups display data in a table so all can view. Number of magnets - number of paper clips.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Ask. What does the data suggest?
  2. Why did some have more or fewer clips on their magnet?
  3. Why might the hook hold more with a second magnet unit added?
  4. Why do you think one 2-unit magnet didn’t hold twice as much as a single magnet. (3 times, 4 times, and so on)
  5. What does this suggest about magnetism?

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

Activity Floating Magnets

Materials:

  • Ring magnets (at least three for each group), section of dowel rod (one for each group)

Focus questions:

  1. Can a magnetic field hold another magnet in thin air?

Learning outcomes:

  1. Review magnets have two poles and they can attract or repel.

Suggested procedures overview:

  1. Put students in groups, focus their attention, and assess their initial understanding of the focus questions.

Exploration (Explore, Focus, Engage, Categorize)

  1. Ask. What will happen if they put the two ring magnets on an upright dowel rod?
  2. Listen to responses.
  3. Ask. How they could record their data.
  4. Give each group the materials.
  5. Let them experiment with the magnets and record their data.
  6. Ask the students to explain the results.

Invention (Invent, Construct, Negotiate, Explain)

  1. Ask. What did you find out? Some floated and some stuck.
  2. What made a difference?
  3. If you were to put stickers: red and blue on the magnets how would that work with your observations? Need a r-r or b-b to float if have a r-b or b-r they attract and won't float.

Discovery (Translate, Elaborate, Extend)

  1. How might this be used in the world. Magnetic trains ...

Lab Notes for activities

Activity -

Materials:

 

 

What did you do?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What did you learn?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What else did you learn?

 

Activity - Attract & repel

Materials:

 

What did you do?

 

 

 

 

 

Object  Material Attract Didn't attract
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       
       

 

 

What did you learn?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What else did you learn?

 

Activity Poles

Materials:

 

 

  Red Blue
Red    
Blue    

 

 

     
     
     

 

 

     
     
     

 

 

 

 

What else did you learn?

 

Activity

Materials:

 

 

Chart the data

Grid image

 

Summarize the class data.

 

 

 

 

Activity 5 -

Materials:

Materials:

 

 

What did you do?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What did you learn?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What else did you learn?

 

Activity 6 -

Materials:

Materials:

 

 

What did you do?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What did you learn?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What else did you learn?

 

 

 

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