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Grades 4 - 5


In this lesson students will learn the three types of mixtures through the use of interactive video. Students will then experiment making mixtures using a variety of ingredients, while observing, comparing and contrasting, and identifying the types of mixtures.
ITV Series
"Take a Look - Lesson 111: Mixtures"
Learning Objectives
Students will be able to:
Per Class Group

Per Student
Pre-Viewing Activities
The teacher will have on a table for each student a clear plastic cup, a container with a secret ingredient (identify each ingredient with a different number written on the lid), a container of water, measuring cups and measuring spoons, a stirrer or spoon, and worksheets.

Teacher says, "Today we are going to learn about what a mixture is and the types of mixtures." Ask, "Does anyone know what a mixture is?" Acknowledge answers. Teacher says, "Before we begin our experiment, a rule all scientists live by is to never put in their mouths materials they are experimenting with. Your first task will be to measure 1 cup of water into your measuring cup and then pour it into the plastic cup. Look at your secret ingredient and make a prediction about how it will mix into the water. Record this on your Mixture Worksheet. Don't forget to write down the number of your secret ingredient. Then measure 1 tablespoon of your secret ingredient and add it to your water. Use a stirrer/spoon to mix your mixture. Record on your worksheet what you notice after just having mixed your mixture. This will be your first observation. Now we will wait 2 minutes to write our next observation. Watch your mixture and I'll let you know when you can record your second observation.

Wait several minutes for this.Teacher asks, "Class, did all ingredients mix well with the water? What did you notice?" Teacher acknowledges responses.
Focus Viewing
To give students a specific responsibility while viewing, ask students to look for the mixture they made, listen for the name and definition of each mixture.

Viewing Activities
Teacher says, "Now we will watch the video to see if we can identify any of your mixtures on the video. Raise your hand if you think this is your mixture."

START video at the title "Mixtures" - "Everyday you see many different mixtures."

PAUSE the video after, "That's because it's made of oil and vinegar," to ask students, "Did anyone have the first mixture seen on the video (oil and water)?" Allow for student responses. "Now let's find another mixture someone made. Hold up your plastic cup if it's yours."

RESUME video.

PAUSE the video after "look at the chocolate milk I made." Ask students, "Does anyone think they made this mixture (water and chocolate)?" Students respond.

To give students a specific responsibility while viewing, ask students to record the name of each type of mixture and its definition on individual worksheet. Teacher says, "Now listen for the word which explains what type of mixture chocolate milk is. Raise your hand if you hear the word." RESUME video.

PAUSE video after "chocolate milk is a suspension." Teacher asks, " What is chocolate milk?" Students answer. "Now write the word suspension on your worksheet as our first type of mixture." For student clarity, teacher can hold up card with the word "Suspension" written on it. Teacher says, "Now let's listen closely to understand what a suspension is."

RESUME video.

PAUSE video at "but eventually they either settled to the bottom or float to the top." Teacher says, "Does anyone think they mixed a suspension. Hold up your experiment. Can someone restate what a suspension is? Now, can you write what a suspension is on your information sheet. " Allow students time to write definitions. "Any guess about what ingredients it may be?" Acknowledge answers.

REWIND video back to "look at the chocolate milk I made."

RESUME video and MUTE to allow teacher to present information in Spanish for bilingual students. PAUSE video at same last PAUSE point.

Teacher says, "A suspension is one type of mixture. Can you name another type? Raise your hand when you think you know what it is."

RESUME video.

PAUSE after "it's called a solution." Teacher checks students for word recognition. Teacher says, "Write on your worksheet 'solution' as the 2nd type of mixture." Again, teacher holds up word card for solution. "Now. let's listen for what a solution is to discover if any of you mixed solutions."

RESUME video.

PAUSE after " the fertilizer and water mixes together very evenly. The fertilizer is said to dissolve in the water." Teacher checks for student comprehension about what is the definition of a solution. "Does anyone have a solution? Please hold it up. How does this differ from a suspension? Now write down the definition of a solution."

REWIND video back to "but eventually they either settled to the bottom or float to the top."

RESUME video and MUTE to allow for Spanish translation. PAUSE at last PAUSE point.

Teacher says, "Now Jeffrey is going to experiment with salt and pepper. Let's predict what may happen. What will happen to the salt mixture? pepper mixture? " Acknowledge students responses. "Let's observe what happens."

RESUME video.

PAUSE after "You're having the fruit drink so you're having a solution," so students can evaluate predictions. "Compare the salt and pepper mixtures. Now we are missing the last type of mixture. Let's listen to see if we can figure out what it is."

RESUME video.

STOP after "that's a lot of mixtures for one dinner." Teacher inquires , "Who remembers the last mixture? Please record this on your worksheet." Allow time for student writing. "Does anyone have a sample of the non-mixing mixture?"

REWIND video back to "You're having the fruit drink so you're having a solution."

RESUME video and MUTE for purpose of Spanish translation.

STOP video after " That's a lot of mixture for one dinner."

Post-Viewing Activities
Now, let's look at all the mixtures we made. I'll say the number of the secret ingredient. Hold up the glass if your number is called. Then we can decide what type of mixture it is. Lastly, I'll tell you your secret ingredient. Remember to tally your information on your Class Experiment chart. You will need it later to graph your results.

Teacher goes in numerical order through the list of secret ingredients and allows students time to tally information of the worksheet titled "Class Experiments."


After tallying is complete, teacher passes each student a glass of ginger ale.

While we refresh ourselves, let's learn about the drink you're enjoying right now. Can you guess what you're drinking? What type of mixture is it? (solution).


To give students a specific responsibility while viewing, ask students to list ingredients in ginger ale and observe the process of a consumable solution being made.


As students are drinking the ginger ale, teacher says to students, "Raise your glass when you hear the name of an ingredient on the video which is in ginger ale."

RESUME video.

PAUSE after "one of its ingredients is sugar" to validate student responses of glasses held up. Teacher says, "Correct. Originally sugar comes in the form of sugar cane. Here's an example of sugar cane." Show sugar cane to students. "Now let's pay attention to find other ingredients.

RESUME video.

PAUSE after "the other main ingredient is ginger" to again validate responses. Teacher says, "Great. Here is a piece of ginger root. Can you analyze what other ingredients make up ginger ale? Acknowledge answers. "Let's see if your predictions are accurate."

RESUME video.

PAUSE after " large steel containers are used to mix ground up ginger, sugar and lemon flavoring" to see if glasses are raised. Teacher asks, "What flavoring was used? Anything else in ginger ale?"

RESUME video.

PAUSE after "Carbon dioxide is added to make it sparkle. The ginger ale is ready to be bottled and labeled." Teacher checks for the naming of the last two ingredients (water and carbon dioxide). Teacher instructs students to watch the rest of the process of making ginger ale.

STOP after "Next time you drink soda pop, try to figure out what was mixed together to try and make it."


"Now we are going to design a graph which will record our class experiment results. You may make either a pictograph or a bar graph. Remember, we are recording the number of mixtures, solutions and suspensions. First we need to refer to our Class Experiment Sheet. Please count the numbers in each kind of mixture and write a tally at the bottom of that sheet. Now you have the data you will need for your graph."

Teacher passes out graph paper and colored pencils.

"If you are using a pictograph, think about a simple drawing or symbol which could represent each mixture. Using a bar graph, you may want to use various colors on your graph."

Students design their respective graphs. When they are finished they can share their designs with the class.

Action Plan
1. Have students write letters to beverage companies to find out what ingredients are in their respective mixtures. Prior to sending out letters students should record predictions about their ingredients, and when answers are sent back to students they can confirm or deny predictions.

2. Write to a cooking school to invite a chef to visit the class to speak about mixtures used in food preparation.
Language Arts

Using a pipette/eye dropper, drop one drop of oil into a clear jar of colored water. After students observe what happens to drop, have them create a poem about what they saw.


Have students decide to test 4-5 items they bring from home as a group. Use a different liquid (not water), and test these ingredients in these liquids. Have students change the amount of liquid to see if there is difference in type of mixture (1/4 cup, 1/2 cup). Have students measure different amounts of the added ingredient to the liquid to see what happens is a mixture is more concentrated. Record measurements used and keep a tally of the results.


1. With adult supervision, have students replicate this experiment at home using a variety of ingredients and different liquids. They will need to record observations on a data collection sheet, and graph their results. Students can report back to class and share their findings.

2. Using a mixture of oil and colored water in a clear plastic bottle/jar, students can build their own model of a non-mixing mixture, known as a Wave Machine.

Art Challenge students to draw the results of their experiments, either the ones done in class or the ones done at home.


Chemistry for Every Kid, Janice Van Cleave
Simple Chemistry, Neil Ardley (Action Science Series)
Chemistry, Dr. Ann Newmark (Eyewitness Series)
Science Experiments You Can Eat, Vicki Cobb
Adventures with Atoms and Molecules, Robert Mebane and Thomas Rybolt
333 More Science Tricks & Experiments, Robert Brown


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