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Magnetic or Non-magnetic?

In this worksheet, students will be able to explore the question of whether an object is magnetic or not and how to tell using experiments.

'Magnetic or Non-magnetic?' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:  Forces and Magnets

Curriculum subtopic:  Materials: Magnetic or Not?

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

It's often tricky to find out if something is magnetic or not.  Magnets are great to play with and to find out about forces but how do you go about finding out if something is magnetic?

 

In this worksheet you can test your knowledge on magnetism and also predict what you think is going to happen in a variety of different magnetic situations.

 

Magnets are so attractive!

Here are pictures of different objects. Tick all of the ones you think are attracted to a magnet:

 

Metal paperclip Needle Pencil CD Scissors Plastic ruler

paperclip

needle

pencil

CD

scissors

ruler

Which of these items are attracted to a magnet? (Tick all ones you think are right).

steel knife

gold cup

aluminium foil

iron nail

plastic plate

wooden spoon

brass key

Are all metals magnetic?

yes, all metals are magnetic

no, no metals are magnetic

no, only some metals are magnetic

Which of these pairs of metals are magnetic?

iron and steel

gold and silver

copper and bronze

Why can a magnet be used under a piece of paper to move a small steel ladybird which is sitting on top of the paper?

 

Magnetic ladybird

because the ladybird is magnetic but the paper is not

because the ladybird and the paper are both magnetic

because the paper is attracted to the magnet

Naughty Micky was playing in the garden and he tipped a bucket of screws and stones into the paddling pool. If his Mum used a magnet to try to get them out, what would happen?

it would pick up both the screws and the stones

it would pick up just the screws and not the stones

it would pick up just the stones but not the screws

it wouldn't pick up anything because magnetism doesn't work in water

How are magnets used in recycling centres?

 

Scrapyard

they separate metals from non-metals

they are used to remove rusty metals

they separate iron and steel from other materials

  • Question 1

Here are pictures of different objects. Tick all of the ones you think are attracted to a magnet:

 

Metal paperclip Needle Pencil CD Scissors Plastic ruler

CORRECT ANSWER
paperclip
needle
scissors
EDDIE SAYS
You chose the metal ones, didn't you? That's nearly good enough, although as you'll learn only a few different metals are attracted to a magnet. CDs are aluminium inside a plastic sandwich, but aluminium isn't magnetic. Paperclips, needles and scissors are generally made of steel which is magnetic.
  • Question 2

Which of these items are attracted to a magnet? (Tick all ones you think are right).

CORRECT ANSWER
steel knife
iron nail
EDDIE SAYS
Bit more difficult! It's not simply the metal ones ... the wooden spoon and plastic plate are not metals and so are not magnetic. Of the rest gold, aluminium and brass are metals but are not attracted to a magnet. Only things made of iron (and steel) and nickel are attracted.
  • Question 3

Are all metals magnetic?

CORRECT ANSWER
no, only some metals are magnetic
EDDIE SAYS
Amazingly very few metals are magnetic! The obvious one is iron and also steel, which is about 98% iron. There's also nickel (all our newer 1p/2p coins are made of nickel coated in copper, so try putting a magnet near one!) and one you'll almost never hear of: cobalt.
  • Question 4

Which of these pairs of metals are magnetic?

CORRECT ANSWER
iron and steel
EDDIE SAYS
Lots of people think metals like copper, aluminium and lead are magnetic, but ... they're not! It's iron and steel which are attracted to a magnet.
  • Question 5

Why can a magnet be used under a piece of paper to move a small steel ladybird which is sitting on top of the paper?

 

Magnetic ladybird

CORRECT ANSWER
because the ladybird is magnetic but the paper is not
EDDIE SAYS
Magnetism is a force that can pass through non-magnetic materials, like paper. The thinner they are, the greater the magnetic force, so the ladybird will be moved easily by the magnet on the paper. It will often work through a table, but the magnet will need to be quite strong.
  • Question 6

Naughty Micky was playing in the garden and he tipped a bucket of screws and stones into the paddling pool. If his Mum used a magnet to try to get them out, what would happen?

CORRECT ANSWER
it would pick up just the screws and not the stones
EDDIE SAYS
In fact magnetism works fine in water - limpet mines that are attached underneath ships to destroy them are magnetic. The magnet will only attract the screws and not the stones, which are not magnetic.
  • Question 7

How are magnets used in recycling centres?

 

Scrapyard

CORRECT ANSWER
they separate iron and steel from other materials
EDDIE SAYS
Only the iron and steel items will be attracted to the giant magnet, so it is used to separate those out from the other stuff. They are then melted down to make new cans, cars, nails and so on.
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