Building Blocks of Science® 3D: Structure and Properties of Matter (©2019) 3-Use Unit Kit |

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Building Blocks of Science® 3D: Structure and Properties of Matter (©2019) 3-Use Unit Kit

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Grade 5. Structure and Properties of Matter allows students to discover both physical and chemical properties of matter, differentiating the properties of solids, liquids, and gases. Lessons are structured in 30-minute class sessions so science fits easily into your day. The Structure and Properties of Matter 3-Use Unit Kit includes teacher's guide, 60-month license to access online digital resources, and enough supplies and apparatus to teach the unit 3 times to a class of up to 30 students.



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Grade 5. In 6 lessons spanning 21 class sessions, the Building Blocks of Science® 3D unit Structure and Properties of Matter helps students learn that the structure and properties of matter are fundamental concepts in science and discover both the physical and chemical properties of matter. Building Blocks of Science® 3D lessons are structured in 30-minute class sessions, making it easy to fit science into your day. The Structure and Properties of Matter 3-Use Unit Kit includes a teacher's guide (item #515542), a 60-month license for the teacher and students to access online digital resources, and enough supplies and apparatus to teach the unit 3 times to a class of up to 30 students.

Along with hands-on learning, this Building Blocks of Science® 3D unit also provides digital resources to enhance the classroom experience. These components offer an additional method of delivering content, particularly for classrooms with consistent access to computers or tablets. Digital components include digital teacher's guide, simulations, digital literacy reader, interactive whiteboard activities, interactive student investigation sheets, and assessment. All digital resources for Building Blocks of Science® 3D are accessible at

Unit Summary
Matter makes up everything around us, but students may struggle to understand this given that they cannot see certain types of matter, like gases, and that they may not recognize when matter is a mixture or a solution. Structure and Properties of Matter provides hands-on, inquiry-based investigations focused on phenomena that support the concepts related to matter. Through a series of six lessons, students study the states of matter and make connections to physical and chemical properties, including volume, mass, freezing point, melting point, boiling point, and the ability to form mixtures and solutions. Students will learn to describe matter and predict its interactions with other types of matter.

Next Generation Science Standards*
The Building Blocks of Science® 3D unit Structure and Properties of Matter (©2019) integrates process skills as defined by the Next Generation Standards.

Performance Expectations

  • 5-PS1-1: Develop a model to describe that matter is made of particles too small to be seen.
  • 5-PS1-2: Measure and graph quantities to provide evidence that regardless of the type of change that occurs when heating, cooling, or mixing substances, the total weight of matter is conserved.
  • 5-PS1-3: Make observations and measurements to identify materials based on their properties.
  • 5-PS1-4: Conduct an investigation to determine whether the mixing of two or more substances results in new substances.
  • 3-5-ETS1-2: Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.

Disciplinary Core Ideas

  • PS1.A: Structure and Properties of Matter
  • PS1.B: Chemical Reactions
  • ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions
  • ETS1.C: Optimizing the Design Solution

Science and Engineering Practices

  • Asking Questions and Defining Problems
  • Developing and Using Models
  • Planning and Carrying Out Investigations
  • Analyzing and Interpreting Data
  • Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking
  • Engaging in Argument from Evidence

Crosscutting Concepts

  • Cause and Effect
  • Scale, Proportion, and Quantity

Common Core State Standards
Language Arts

  • L.5.2: Conventions of Standard English
  • RF.5.3: Phonics and Word Recognition
  • RF.5.4: Fluency
  • RI.5.4: Craft and Structure
  • RI.5.10: Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity
  • SL.5.1: Comprehension and Collaboration


  • 5.MD.B.2: Represent and interpret data.
  • 5.MD.C.3: Geometric measurement: Understand concepts of volume.
  • 5.MD.C.4: Geometric measurement: Understand concepts of volume.
  • 5.MD.C.5: Geometric measurement: Understand concepts of volume.
  • 5.G.A.2: Graph points on the coordinate plane to solve real world and mathematical problems.

Lesson Overviews
Lesson 1

In this first lesson, a pre-unit assessment activity encourages students to share what they already know by observing demonstrations of the three states of matter. Students are introduced to the terms "mass" and "volume." They associate these terms with physical properties of matter and practice taking these measurements. Students draw connections between a material and its mass and volume. Later, students consider gases, and they use balloons to prove that gas also has mass and volume. These concepts lay the foundation for understanding that matter is composed of particles, which will be further investigated in the next lesson. Once students begin to understand particle behavior, they will be able to explore state changes.
Lesson 2
In the previous lesson, students examined matter, identified its three states, and investigated volume and mass as properties of matter. In Lesson 2, students continue their exploration of matter by developing a model to explain the existence of particles. Students begin by making observations as water changes state and then making a model to describe the changing behavior of the water’s particles. As students develop an understanding of boiling point, melting point, and freezing point, they are also introduced to evaporation and condensation. The concept of matter conservation is developed throughout these lessons and will be carried throughout the unit. As students investigate further in the following lessons, they will begin to make connections between matter, its properties, and how it is used in the world around them.
Lesson 3
In the previous lesson, students identified some physical properties of materials and explored how the particles of matter are affected during state changes by considering melting point, freezing point, boiling point, evaporation, and condensation. In Lesson 3, students continue to examine physical properties to compare, contrast, and identify materials. Through teacher demonstrations and hands-on investigations, students learn that many properties can be used to identify matter. Students plan an investigation to test the buoyancy, hardness, magnetism, and viscosity of different materials and then analyze the data they collect to make connections between the materials and how they can be used. Density is introduced as an important concept that relates to a material’s mass and volume, and it will be further discussed when students examine mixtures in later lessons.
Lesson 4
In the previous lessons, students learned about states of matter by examining their physical properties, such as mass and volume, and making connections to the behavior of the particles in each state. Students also made distinctions between different materials using their physical properties. In Lesson 4, students consider how physical properties may be affected when different materials are mixed. In three investigations, students define "mixture," create mixtures, and make connections between mixing and conserving matter. Solutions are also introduced as a type of mixture in which one material dissolves into another. Students draw upon phenomena to develop investigations to test whether materials can be separated from each other. The law of conservation of matter is introduced at this time and will be further investigated as students explore chemical changes in the next lesson.
Lesson 5
Students have been exposed to many physical changes throughout this unit. The previous lesson focused on mixtures and solutions to provide evidence for matter conservation. Lesson 5 guides students in identifying the evidence of a physical change when matter is manipulated or mixed. Students are also introduced to chemical changes in this lesson. Through hands-on, inquiry-based investigation, students gather evidence to differentiate between chemical changes and physical changes. Students learn to distinguish changes in state from changes in identity. The concepts from this lesson will be applied in the following lesson when students engineer a water filtration system.
Lesson 6
In previous lessons, students explored concepts related to the structure and properties of matter. Students began by considering properties such as mass, volume, buoyancy, hardness, solubility, and magnetism and using them to compare substances in different states of matter. Students made connections between the movement of particles and state of matter; they know that particle behavior changes as matter changes state. Students also considered physical and chemical changes related to mixing matter. In the final Lesson 6, students apply their knowledge from previous lessons in an engineering challenge. Students are introduced to water purification and are tasked with designing a procedure to filter the water in a provided mixture. In groups, students define the problem, develop a solution, test their design, analyze results, and optimize their model. Students are expected to utilize methods of separation from previous investigations and communicate their results to their classmates. Finally, students assess their growth of knowledge by reviewing the class charts from Lesson 1
and developing quiz questions to answer as a class. By the end of this lesson, students should be able to relate phenomenon of water filtration to the concepts discussed in the unit and explain the importance of the engineering cycle.

*Next Generation Science Standards® is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards were involved in the production of, and do not endorse, this product.

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Components Qty Included?
Teacher's Guide 1 Included
Unit Technology Pack (60-month subscription to to access digital teacher's guide, digital instructional resources, and digital literacy reader) 1 Included
Structure and Properties of Matter On-Grade Student Reader 1 Included
Structure and Properties of Matter Below-Grade Student Reader 1 Included
Bag, Plastic, Resealable, 6 x 6" 72 Included
Balance, Precision School, with Weights 4 Included
Ball, Metal, 4.5 mm 2,800 Included
Balloon, Round, 9" 148 Included
Beaker, Pyrex®, 100 mL 2 Included
Block, Wax, Natural White 8 Included
Clay, Modeling, Green, 1/4 lb 8 Included
Cup, 1-1/4 oz, with Lid 135 Included
Cup, Measuring, 1/4 c 8 Included
Cup, Plastic, 10 oz 400 Included
Cylinder, Graduated, Polypropylene, 1,000 mL 8 Included
Funnel, Utility, 2-3/4" 8 Included
Glove, Disposable, Small 200 Included
Gravel, Aquarium, 5 lb 1 Included
Iodine, Tincture, 2%, 1 oz 3 Included
Iron Filings, 40-60 Mesh, 500 g 3 Included
Jar Closure, Plastic, Clear 10 Included
Jar, Plastic, Clear, 32 oz 10 Included
Lens, Hand 30 Included
Magnetic Wand 12 Included
Marble 450 Included
Mesh, Large Opening, 24 x 30" 3 Included
Mesh, Small Opening, 9 x 9" 24 Included
Pipet, Graduated, Nonsterile, 3 mL 96 Included
Sand, Marine, 1 lb 2 Included
Soil, 1 L 2 Included
Spoon, Measuring, Tablespoon 8 Included
String, Super Twine, 200-ft Roll 1 Included
Tank, Plastic, 1-1/2 gal 8 Included
Tape, Masking, 3/4", Roll 16 Included
Thermometer, Metal, Immersion 2 Included
Tray, Cafe, Plastic, Red, 10 x 14" 8 Included
Washer, Flat, 5/16" 25 Included
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