Teaching Physical Science with Children’s Literature: It’s Science! Solid, Liquid, or Gas?


Introduction and Summary
It’s Science! Solid, Liquid, or Gas? written by Sally Hewitt, is about the different states of matter. It explores matter throughout the book with a key word on each page, such as “Gas”, followed by a description of what the matter is. Each page also describes an experiment or question related to the topic of the page. For example: Gas has an experiment in the Try it Out! section that asks a child to blow into a balloon to see the gas blow it up and feel the gas come out of the balloon.

Curriculum Connections
This is a great book to introduce young elementary students to the states of matter and exploration of water. One of the topics is water where the different states of water are explored (SOL K.5a) as well as whether objects sink or float in the water (SOL K.5c). The question of “sink or float” can be explored in a simple experiment in small groups. The students will determine if the objects given to them will sink or float in the water. Another section of the book describes dissolving. There is an experiment determining what materials will dissolve in water (SOL 1.1). Finallly, the sections about melting and changing shape can be useful when one is learning about the processes of changing states of matter (SOL 2.3)

Additional Resources

  • States of Matter Lesson Plan  This is a lesson plan geared for grades 1-3 about states of matter using balloons filled with ice, air, or water.
  • Song about Matter :This is a fun song about matter using the tune “Oh Dear, What Can the Matter Be?” It might be a bit complicated for Kindergarten but was used in a 2nd grade classroom. It also has a video with a child singing the song.
  • Sink or Float Lesson Plan:   This is a lesson plan about objects that sink or float that also uses a book about Christopher Columbus to incorporate how his ship floated across the ocean. What else can float in the water? What sinks?

Book: It’s Science! Solid, Liquid, or Gas?
Author: Sally Hewitt
Publisher: Children’s Press
Publication Date:
Pages:  32 pages
Grade Range: Kindergarten-2nd grade
ISBN: 0613375459

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