Access Point #: SC.8.P.8.Su.4

Observe and compare substances by physical properties, such as weight, size, boiling and melting points, and magnetic properties.
General Information
Number: SC.8.P.8.Su.4
Category: Supported
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Big Idea: Properties of Matter : A. All objects and substances in the world are made of matter. Matter has two fundamental properties: matter takes up space and matter has mass which gives it inertia.

B. Objects and substances can be classified by their physical and chemical properties. Mass is the amount of matter (or "stuff") in an object. Weight, on the other hand, is the measure of force of attraction (gravitational force) between an object and Earth.

The concepts of mass and weight are complicated and potentially confusing to elementary students. Hence, the more familiar term of "weight" is recommended for use to stand for both mass and weight in grades K-5. By grades 6-8, students are expected to understand the distinction between mass and weight, and use them appropriately.

Clarification for grades K-2: The use of the more familiar term ‘weight’ instead of the term “mass” is recommended for grades K-2.

Clarification for grades 3-5: In grade 3, introduce the term mass as compared to the term weight. In grade 4, investigate the concept of weight versus mass of objects. In grade 5, discuss why mass (not weight) is used to compare properties of solids, liquids and gases.

Related Benchmarks

This access point is an alternate version of the following benchmark(s).

Related Courses

This access point is part of these courses.
2002100: M/J Comprehensive Science 3
2002110: M/J Comprehensive Science 3, Advanced
2003010: M/J Physical Science
2003020: M/J Physical Science, Advanced
7820017: Access M/J Comprehensive Science 3
2002055: M/J Comprehensive Science 1 Accelerated Honors
7920030: Fundamental Integrated Science 1

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this access point.

Teaching Idea

Density of Solid Objects:

A series of straightforward simulations offers students a variety of ways to explore the concepts of mass, volume, and density. Students see that objects of the same mass may not have the same volume, objects of the same volume may not have the same mass, objects having a density greater than that of water sink in water, and the density of a floating object determines the position of the object in a tank of water.

Type: Teaching Idea

Unit/Lesson Sequences

Middle School Chemistry Unit | Chapter 5 | The Water Molecule and Dissolving:

Students investigate the polarity of the water molecule and design tests to compare water to less polar liquids for evaporation rate, surface tension, and ability to dissolve certain substances. Students also discover that dissolving applies to solids, liquids, and gases.

Type: Unit/Lesson Sequence

Middle School Chemistry Unit | Chapter 3 | Density:

Students experiment with objects that have the same volume but different mass and other objects that have the same mass but different volume to develop a meaning of density. Students also experiment with density in the context of sinking and floating and look at substances on the molecular level to discover why one substance is more or less dense than another.

Type: Unit/Lesson Sequence

Student Resources

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Parent Resources

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