Smart and modern materials
The new materials changing the way we live
Discover and explore the new materials changing the way we live with our Smart and modern materials activity.
The development of new materials with incredible properties are changing the way we live: from LCD TVs to super light airliners, these materials have quickly found their way into pretty much all of the modern technology around us.
Activity info, teachers’ notes and curriculum links
In this practical lesson, students conduct different tests on a selection of materials and identify each one from its properties. The tests include Eureka cans, electrical circuits, and other interesting investigations to test the density, hardness, magnetic and conductive properties of materials. This activity can be tailored to include tests that best investigate the properties of the materials you have available.
Resources required for class
- Samples of 8 to10 different materials, with more than one sample of each if possible. All the samples should be able to fit in the available eureka cans
- Access to accurate weighing scales
- Safety glasses
Resources required per team
- HB pencil, copper coin*, knife**, iron nail, small steel file
- Eureka can and accurate measuring cylinder
- A magnet
- Power pack/battery pack, 3 leads, light bulb and holder, crocodile clips
- A pad of sticky notes
The activity sheet includes teacher notes, guidance, useful web links, and links (where appropriate) to the national curriculum in each of the four devolved UK nations; England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales.
All activity sheets and supporting resources are free to download and are fully editable, so you can tailor them to your students’ and your schools’ needs.
Links to stream and download the videos can be found resources section below.