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Challenge Activities
States of Matter States of Matter
Download a PDF file of States of Matter Challenge Activity.
Grade Level: Science content statement addressed:
Middle School

Physical Science
Matter and Motion
Changes of state are explained by a model of matter composed of atoms and/or molecules that are in motion.


Students create a model that show the movement of molecules in the three states of matter. As an extension, students could produce a video showing how their models the movement of molecules in different states.

Not all required – these are possible materials that students may want to choose from, but they just might see something we don’t that they will use for their model.
  • gum drops
  • miniature marshmallows
  • Cotton balls
  • Sytrofoam balls
  • Play Dough
  • Clay
  • Toothpicks
  • Straws
  • Duct Tape
  • Masking Tape



  • iPad
  • Phone or other device to record
  • Working in pairs students will create a model that shows the movement of molecules in the three states of matter.

  • Students will draw a sketch of their prototype first.



This Maker activity lends itself well to creating a Stop Action Motion of the concept using their prototypes.
Here are some free easy to use apps for a Stop Motion. Make sure students do a story board before filming their Stop Action Motion.

Stop Motion Cafe

Lego Movie Maker

Post-Project Classroom Discussion/Activities:

What other ways could you design the three states of Matter?

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