Chemical and Physical Changes

Contributor: Alison Weiss. Lesson ID: 10586

What's the matter? You are! And so is everything else! Everything, even you, is made of matter. Matter changes, like melting ice or toasting bread. Using videos and experiments, learn about matter!



learning style
Auditory, Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Lion, Beaver
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • Have you ever toasted (and eaten!) a marshmallow?


  • Have you ever tried to un-toast a marshmallow, fix a melted crayon, or bend a paper clip back into shape?
  • Could you?

Matter is everything that you can see around you.

It can be anything that has mass (weight) and takes up physical space. A stick is matter, and so is a marshmallow!

  • Did you know that all matter can be changed?

Matter can be changed physically or chemically.

A physical change occurs when the matter's form or shape is changed. Physical changes can be caused by motion, temperature, or even pressure!

Usually, physical changes to matter are reversible. That means you can undo the change.

Chemical changes to matter happen when the molecules in the matter change. Molecules are the smallest amount of a substance.

Usually, when a chemical change occurs, it is impossible or challenging to reverse. There are some clues to chemical changes, including color changes, gas formation, and light or heat appearance.

For example, roasting a marshmallow over the fire is a chemical change because you are cooking the marshmallow!

To learn more about the types of changes molecules and atoms go through, watch the video below.

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  • Do you want to learn more?

Visit Physical & Chemical Changes of Matter and click on Play Video. Then, click on Test Yourself.

Next, review What are irreversible changes?.

When you are ready, continue to the Got It? section.

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