This NGSS elementary school lab provides evidence that matter is made of particles (iron which is ultimately made of atoms) too small to be seen as well as allows students to make observations to identify materials based on their properties. It has been a favorite of my students' for years! They cannot believe that what they are seeing in the cereal is real iron, a metallic element from the periodic table!
The goal is for the students to understand that some elements on the periodic table are present in every day things like people! Many elements are needed by humans. The students design and carry out their own experiments to support the idea that iron is r isn;t present in cereal. For the third, the teacher supplies the baggie of dissolved Total cereal. The magnet is able to extract the iron from the cereal! This lab is complete with an answer key and teacher prep info!
Materials needed per group:
1 strong magnet
1 baggie of Total cereal
1 hand lens
1 plate or bowl
1 baggie of dissolved cereal (can be reused)
1 empty box for Nutritional Facts
This lesson is aligned to the NGSS Next Generation Science Standard Performance Expectations:
5-PS1-1. Develop a model to describe that matter is made of particles too small to be seen
5-PS1-3. Make observations and measurements to identify materials based on their properties.
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