Seeking Out Solids and Liquids in Middle School Science

Ms. Schibuk’s middle school science class is doing a physical science unit focused on exploring what it means to study a material “scientifically,” and also looking specifically and the scientific, ecological, and social issues surrounding different types of toxic materials.  This is a multi-part lab in which the students are working to determine the chemical and physical properties of liquids and solids.  Students began with a mystery mixture that was meant to represent some type of industrial sludge.
In the first part of the lab they worked to separate the different components of the mixture, which had two liquids and a variety of solids.  Now that they’ve separated the substances, the class is studying the chemical and physical properties of each solid and liquid.  Today, they  focused on finding the density, a key physical property, of the solids and liquids.  Next week, Ms. Schibuk’s class will study some of the chemical properties of the substances.