The smart way to improve grades

Comprehensive & curriculum aligned

Affordable pricing from £10/month

Properties of Solids

In this worksheet, students will consider the electrical and thermal properties of solid materials.

'Properties of Solids' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Properties and Changes of Materials

Curriculum subtopic:   Comparing and Grouping Properties of Materials

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

We know that materials are chosen for their properties. Some materials have special properties which make them useful for keeping things warm or cool. Heat travels from a warm place to a cool place.

 

Cup of coffee

 

The heat energy in the coffee travels from the hot liquid, through the ceramic cup (careful it's hot!) and from the cup to our hands and the air surrounding it.

 

Some materials allow heat to travel through them quickly and easily - these are called thermal conductors. Materials which slow down the movement of heat energy are called thermal insulators.

 

Toaster

 

Metals have a special property, they conduct electricity, which means that they allow electricity to pass through them easily. They are called electrical conductors. Metal wires make up the circuit in the toaster. But we don't get an electric shock each time we use the toaster! This is because other materials do not conduct electricity. These are called electrical insulators are are used to cover the metal parts of the toaster.

 

Right, with all that in mind let's have a closer look at solids.

Here are two lists of material properties.

 

Can you match up the opposites?

Column A

Column B

thermal conductor
electrical conductor
shiny
opaque
waterproof
absorbent
electrical insulator
thermal insulator
transparent
dull

Which of these statements best describes a thermal conductor

keeps time in an orchestra

slows down the movement of heat

allows heat to travel easily

allows light to pass through easily

Which of these statements best describes a thermal insulator

furry slippers

slows down the movement of heat energy

transfers heat quickly

vacuum flask

Choose THREE materials which are good thermal conductors

steel

wool

copper

wood

aluminium

Which THREE of these materials slow down the movement of heat?

wool

wood

nylon fibres

tin

iron

Malik makes a simple electrical circuit using wires, a battery and a bulb. He leaves a break in the circuit which he uses to test the electrical conductivity.

 

Predict which THREE of these objects, when connected to the circuit, will make the bulb light.

metal paperclip

plastic ruler

graphite pencil sharpened at both ends

wooden lolly stick

gold ring

Malik looks at the results of his investigation. He writes a general statement about his findings.

 

Which one of these best describes his results about conductors? 

non-metals are good conductors

metals are good electrical conductors

plastics are good conductors

Malik wants to carry on with his investigation. He collects another set of objects to test.

 

Can you help him predict which THREE from this list are electrical insulators

plastic fork

cotton string

metal key

drinking straw

two pence coin

Malik has learnt that metals are good electrical and thermal conductors. He also remembers that iron, and metals which are mixtures containing a lot of iron, attract and repel each other.

 

What is the name of this weird force?

pushing and pulling

friction

magnetism

Which THREE of these materials are non-magnetic

gold

glass

iron

steel

diamond

  • Question 1

Here are two lists of material properties.

 

Can you match up the opposites?

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

thermal conductor
thermal insulator
shiny
dull
waterproof
absorbent
electrical insulator
electrical conductor
transparent
opaque
EDDIE SAYS
How good are you at opposites? Shiny and dull for example? Some in this list are easier than others. If you can see through something., it's transparent; if you can't, it's opaque (glass vs wood, for example). Similarly, your wellie boots are waterproof whereas you'd want a baby's nappy to be absorbent.
  • Question 2

Which of these statements best describes a thermal conductor

CORRECT ANSWER
allows heat to travel easily
EDDIE SAYS
Metals are good thermal conductors. We use metal to make objects that quickly transfer heat energy from a hot place to a cooler place.
  • Question 3

Which of these statements best describes a thermal insulator

CORRECT ANSWER
slows down the movement of heat energy
EDDIE SAYS
Furry slippers and vacuum flasks are examples of objects designed to slow down the movement of heat energy. That means that they keep things warm as the heat only leaks away slowly.
  • Question 4

Choose THREE materials which are good thermal conductors

CORRECT ANSWER
steel
copper
aluminium
EDDIE SAYS
Saucepans and radiators are made from metals because they transfer heat quickly and easily.
  • Question 5

Which THREE of these materials slow down the movement of heat?

CORRECT ANSWER
wool
wood
nylon fibres
EDDIE SAYS
Many non-metals are good thermal insulators and we use them to stop heat transfer.
  • Question 6

Malik makes a simple electrical circuit using wires, a battery and a bulb. He leaves a break in the circuit which he uses to test the electrical conductivity.

 

Predict which THREE of these objects, when connected to the circuit, will make the bulb light.

CORRECT ANSWER
metal paperclip
graphite pencil sharpened at both ends
gold ring
EDDIE SAYS
Metals are good electrical conductors. The graphite in a pencil is a form of carbon. Although carbon is a non-metal, in it's graphite form (there are four different sorts of carbon!) it is also a good conductor of electricity!
  • Question 7

Malik looks at the results of his investigation. He writes a general statement about his findings.

 

Which one of these best describes his results about conductors? 

CORRECT ANSWER
metals are good electrical conductors
EDDIE SAYS
Although he needs to test out quite a lot more substances, Malik's already made an observation: metals seem to be good electrical conductors. Neither the lolly stick nor the plastic ruler lit up the bulb, so non-metals don't seem to be conductors.
  • Question 8

Malik wants to carry on with his investigation. He collects another set of objects to test.

 

Can you help him predict which THREE from this list are electrical insulators

CORRECT ANSWER
plastic fork
cotton string
drinking straw
EDDIE SAYS
Non-metals (usually plastics) are used in circuits to stop electricity travelling and keep electrical appliances safe.
  • Question 9

Malik has learnt that metals are good electrical and thermal conductors. He also remembers that iron, and metals which are mixtures containing a lot of iron, attract and repel each other.

 

What is the name of this weird force?

CORRECT ANSWER
magnetism
EDDIE SAYS
Not all metals are magnetic! For example, iron is magnetic but aluminium isn't. This property is used to separate aluminium and iron cans when they are recycled!
  • Question 10

Which THREE of these materials are non-magnetic

CORRECT ANSWER
gold
glass
diamond
EDDIE SAYS
Steel is a mixture of iron and other materials, so steel is magnetic. You might think that gold is magnetic, because it's a metal. However, only a very few metals are magnetic. Do you know what they are? If not, find out!
---- OR ----

Sign up for a £1 trial so you can track and measure your child's progress on this activity.

What is EdPlace?

We're your National Curriculum aligned online education content provider helping each child succeed in English, maths and science from year 1 to GCSE. With an EdPlace account you’ll be able to track and measure progress, helping each child achieve their best. We build confidence and attainment by personalising each child’s learning at a level that suits them.

Get started
laptop

Start your £1 trial today.
Subscribe from £10/month.