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ZingPath: Properties of Matter

The Density of Marbles

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Properties of Matter

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Lesson Focus

The Density of Marbles


Learning Made Easy

You will observe the relationship between mass and volume. You will also observe how the mass to volume ratio changes as the volume changes.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Calculate volume of an object by using the displacement method.
  • Explain that the mass -volume ratio of a substance remains constant as the volume of the substance changes.
  • Explain that density is the ratio of mass to volume in a substance.
  • Calculate density of a substance when given the mass and volume.

Everything You'll Have Covered

DENSITY is a physical property of matter, as each element and compound has a unique density associated with it. Density is defined as the amount of the mass per unit volume in an object. Density is equal to the mass of the object divided by its volume.

Density may also refer to how closely "packed" or "crowded" the particles appears to be. Two objects could have the same mass but mass alone would not give an accurate depiction of the object. By using density a person can see the relationship of how much space the object's mass occupies. For example, compare a polystyrene foam cube to a lead cube of the same mass. Because the lead cube has a much higher density, its volume is going to be much less than the polystyrene cube. The reason is that the particles of lead are closer to one another than the particles of polystyrene foam.

Density can be used to predict if objects are able to float also. This knowledge can help with the separation of heterogeneous mixtures. A substance with a density less than water, (1g/mL), is able to float in water. Substances with a density high than water (1g/mL) will sink, unless they have a shape or volume that will displace a greater amount of water.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 20 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Learners should be familiar with mass, volume, and SI units of measurement.
Course Chemistry
Type of Tutorial Experiment
Key Vocabulary density, experiments, graduated cylinders