States of Matter: Solids

Contributor: Samantha Penna. Lesson ID: 11755

Can you hold water in your hand without using a glass? Why can the glass hold the water? Why can you hold a stuffed animal? What is everything made of? Get fun, solid answers!


Physical Science

learning style
Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Grade Level
Primary (K-2)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • Is the stuffed animal above a solid, liquid, or gas?
  • How do you know?

Everything is made up of matter.

Matter is anything that takes up space and has mass. The stuffed animal you saw at the beginning of the lesson is made up of matter.

Any object that is a solid has atoms. Atoms are the small building blocks that makeup everything on the earth.

The picture below shows the atoms in a solid object. The atoms and molecules (collections of atoms) in solid objects stay close together and do not move around much.

  • Why do you think the atoms and molecules in a solid object are so close together?

states of matter

The atoms and molecules stay close together in solid objects. This causes solids to keep their shape.

Take a look at the rubber duck below. This toy is solid. The toy holds its shape and does not move like a liquid or gas. The atoms and molecules in the toy are held close together.

rubber duck

Solid objects can be soft like a stuffed animal, hard like a rock, furry, bumpy, and even small like sand! A small grain of sand always keeps its shape.

As long as the object keeps its shape and takes up space, it is solid. If you have a pet, your pet is solid! Your pet takes up space and does not change shape.


Not all objects that are solid stay solid. Take a look at the ice cubes below.

  • What is happening to them?

ice cubes

That's right! They are melting.

If a solid is exposed to heat, sometimes it will melt into a liquid. The ice cubes above are solid, and the puddle beneath the ice cubes is a liquid.

You did a solid job learning about matter!

  • How can you tell if an object is solid?

In the Got It? section, watch a video about solids and answer questions.

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