Plastic material properties investigation - KS3 Chemistry

In this chemistry Key Stage 3 (KS3) lesson, students investigate the different properties of plastics. In groups students design an investigation testing either thermal insulation or tensile strength. Included are teacher resources with an investigation template.

This is a single lesson from the Ocean Plastics Science unit. Ocean Plastics Science is a Key Stage 3 (KS3) resource combining both biology and chemistry. Students are taken on the journey of plastic. Exploring how plastics are manufactured, used, and disposed into the ocean. Students will learn the science behind what makes plastics both brilliant for everyday purposes and devastating to our oceans and marine life.

Included in this topic are teacher resources that promote students to conduct authentic research, emulating research conducted by The University of Plymouth. Students will test the properties of plastics, investigate compostable alternatives, and analyse case studies to discover how plastics can physically and chemically harm marine life.

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  • Slideshow-2-why_are_plastics_useful-OP1114Sci.pptx
  • Student-Sheet-2a-Plastic_independent_investigations-OP1114Sci.pdf
  • Teacher-Guidance-2-OP1114Sci.pdf
  • Activity-Overview-2a-Plastic_independent_investigations-OP1114Sci.pdf
  • Image_credits-OP1114Sci.pdf

About this resource


Created: Aug 29, 2019

Updated: Sep 20, 2019


pptx, 1,010 KB



pdf, 171 KB


Lesson plan

pdf, 470 KB


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Creative Commons "Sharealike"

Creative Commons "Sharealike"