Magnetic and Charged Materials (PDF)


Activities aimed at introducing grades 3-5 students to the key concepts of magnetism.



Bill Cowan

Pacific Edge Publishing

48 pp, blackline masters

Level: Grades 3-5


Magnetic and Charged Materials is a Curriculum-Based Science and Technology unit developed for the Ontario Provincial Science Curriculum for grade 3. It contains a number of activities aimed at introducing students to the key concepts of magnetism. It also contains over 20 individual student activities and 12 hands-on experiments, which provide students with an opportunity to discover many of the facts about magnetism and static electricity.



Every activity and experiment in the unit is based on either an overall or specific skill-based curriculum expectation. The unit also contains a test, to be used as a review of the concepts learned, upon completion of the unit of study.


Table of Contents

– Introduction
– Grade 3 Ontario Curriculum Expectations By Activity Location
– Experimental Equipment Lists
– What is a Magnet?
– Uses of Magnets
– Attraction and Repulsion
– Electromagnets
– Experiment 1: What is attracted? What is not attracted
– Experiment 2: How strong are different magnets?
– Experiment 3: How do you make a magnet?
– Experiment 4: How strong is a magnet?
– Experiment 5: Finding the North & South Pole of a Magnet
– Experiment 6: How does the surface a magnet rests on, affect its strength?
– Experiment 7: Can we make a magnet float?
– Describing Some of the Results of Our Experiments
– Magnets Can Be Fun
– Parts of a Maze
– The History of Static Electricity
– Understanding Static Electricity
– What Causes Static Electricity
– Experiment 8: Identifying Pairs of Materials That Produce A Charge
– Experiment 9: Comparing the Electric Strength of Different Charged Materials
– Experiment 10: Finding Out How Two Similarly Charged Materials Behave
– Experiment 11: Identifying the Effect of Different Conditions
– Experiment 12: Investigating How the Force of Attraction is Affected by Distance
– Everyday Examples of Static Electricity
– My Science Unit Cover
– My Dictionary of Words On Magnetic & Charged Materials
– Unit Test
– Roots in the Soil
– Just What Is in This Soil?
– Where Do the Nutrients Go?
– Creating a Worm Farm
– Can a Log Become Soil?

– Research Masters
– Evaluation Tools
– Bibliography
– Newspaper Articles