EDU 548 - Lesson and Unit Plans - Assessment Page- Main page
Magnet Unit
M. Kelly Damiano

Note: While this is an excellent unit to use for teaching grade 2 science, it was not written to the format prescribed in EDU 548, so should not be used as a model for that class.

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3
Unit: Magnets Time: 40 min.
Lesson #1

Introduction to Magnets:

What is a magnet? Where does it come from? How is it useful?

Objectives: SWBAT- Recall what a magnet is made of and where it comes from.

- List uses of magnets.

- Explain in basic terms how a magnet works.

- Create a temporary magnet.

Materials: 12 bar magnets, 12 nails, and paper clips

Prompt: Book, Experiments With Magnets By Helen J. Challand pgs. 5-11

Procedure: Start by asking questions;

* What does a magnet do? ( It attracts things to it)

* What are some uses of magnets?

* Who discovered magnets? (Magnes, a shepherd...)

* What is a magnet made out of? (Iron or Steel)

* Why does it attract things?

Most scientists think it is the way iron is made. Iron looks hard, but it is actually made of many tiny, tiny moving bits called molecules. They are moving all the time, but they are so small that you canít see them move. Each molecule of Iron is a tiny magnet, but since Iron is made of many molecules, all of the molecules are pulling in different directions, so there is no magnetic force or pull. Think of four people having a tug of war, if they are pulling equally in different directions they donít go anywhere.

Now think of four people pulling in the same direction, they have a lot of force. So, magnets are made by lining up all of the Iron molecules in one direction, and that gives them the force they need to pull things towards them.

* Have children form groups of two. Give each group a nail, a bar magnet, and some paper clips.

* have the students try to pick up the paper clips using the magnet * have the students try the same thing with the nail.

* show the students how to stroke the nail with the magnet in one direction to line up the Iron molecules. Have each student stroke the nail 25 times.

* now have the students try to pick up the paper clips with the nail.

Closure: Talk to the kids about why the nail now picks up the clips.

Assessment: See if any of the students can explain why the nail is now magnetic.

Extension: If there is time, brainstorm with the kids about other questions they could ask about temporary magnets, i.e. If we stroke it more, will the nail pick up more clips? Have them try it, if possible.

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3
Unit: magnets Time: Two 35 min. sessions
Lesson #2 M. Kelly Damaino

Discoveries Into The Push and Pull of Magnets

Objectives: SWBAT- Demonstrate the forces of the North and South ends of magnets.

- Describe the affects of different strength magnets.

- List different shapes that magnets come in.

- Demonstrate the ability to follow directions and work cooperatively in groups.

Materials: Magnet kit to be used to form 7 learning centers.

1. Opposing Forces: Washer magnets on a pencil.

2. Magnetic Strengths: 3 different strength magnets and nuts.

3. Opposing Forces: 2 handle magnets labeled North and South

4. Attraction Through Objects: Box, magnetic balls, magnet.

5. Push/Pull Force: Small bar magnets.

6. Magnetic Attraction: Nut, ruler, strong magnet.

7. Feeling the attraction: two magnets

Procedure: Have learning centers set up. Have all the kids on the rug. Explain directions; no more then three kids at a station. Hand out sheets and let kids go to it. Walk around to encourage and help.

Closure: Go over sheets together.

Assessment: Informal: Walking around and watching.

Formal: Review sheets for accuracy.

NAME:_______________________________________ DATE:__________________



Read the directions carefully and fill in your answers as best as you can. Leave each learning center as you found it.

1. Directions: Take the 2 washer magnets, put 1 on the pencil. What happens when you put the second washer magnet on the pencil?____________________________________________________________________


Take the second washer off, turn it over and put it back on. What are the 2 magnets doing now? ___________________________________


2. Directions: Take the small gray magnet and try to pick up all the nuts in a line. Can you raise them all into the air?_________

How many can you lift? ____________________________________________________

Now try the orange magnet, can you lift all the nuts into the air? __________________ How many can you lift?___________________________

Now try the large silver magnet, can you lift them all?___________

How many?_________________________________

Write the colors of the magnets in order from weakest to strongest.______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

3. Directions: Take the yellow and green magnets. Take the north side of the orange magnet and put it close to the south side of the green magnet. What happens?___________________________



Now put the north sides of both of the magnets together. Now what happens?_________________________________________________________

4. Directions: Pick up all 7 of the balls and drop them into the box. What happens?___________________________________________________


Now, move a magnet under the box. What do the balls do?



5. Directions: Take 2 small red bar magnets. Put one magnet on the desk. What happens when you slowly push the south end of the magnet in your hand close to the North end of the magnet on the desk?________________________________________________________


What happens when you bring the South end of one magnet close to the South end of the other?___________________________________

6. Directions: Put one of the objects on the desk at the very end of the ruler. Move the magnet slowly up the ruler towards the object. Stop moving the magnet when the object jumps to the magnet. Measure the distance the magnet pulled each of the objects and write your answer below.

nut ___________________ nail _____________________

paper clip___________________ washer ____________________

7. Directions: Put green and yellow magnet in your hand, slowly bring the blue magnet close to it. Does the magnet push down or pull up from your hand?_______________________________

Now flip the green and yellow magnet over and try it again. What did the magnet do this time?____________________________________


Exploring Magnets Extension Sheet


Use the words below to answer the questions.

Attracted: to be pulled toward something

Repelled: to be pushed or forced away from something

Magnetic Field: the space around a magnet in which objects can be attracted or repelled

Poles: the two ends of the magnet where the magnetic force is the strongest ( North Pole...South Pole)

Iron and Steel: Metals which are attracted to magnets

1. Go to learning center # 3. When you take the North side of the yellow magnet and bring it close to the South side of the green magnet, the magnets are ____________________________________ to each other. When you take the North side of both magnets, the magnets are __________________________________ from each other. Look around and try out the other learning centers, write down the number of any center where you see magnets attracting and repelling each other.____________________________________


2. Go to learning center #4. When you put the magnet under the box, the balls are ______________________________ to the magnet. In order for this to happen, the balls must be made out of

__________________________________ or _______________________________________.

3. Go to learning center # 5. On the red magnets there is a N on one end and a S on the other end. What do these letters stand for?_______________________________________________________________________

4. Go to learning center # 6. When you bring the magnet up the ruler close to one of the objects, the object jumps to the magnet before the magnet even reaches the object. What is the name of the area around the magnet that makes this happen?_______________________________________________________________________

What is the number of the other learning centers that have magnets that attract objects that are not other magnets?


Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3

Unit: Magnets Time: 40 min.

Lesson #3 M. Kelly Damiano

Magnetic Fields


Objectives: SWBAT- Work cooperatively in pairs.

- Explain that there is a certain area around a magnet that has a push/pull force.

- Draw magnetic fields.

Materials: Iron filings, 20 magnets, construction paper, magnetic field hand out.

Procedures: * Put students into groups of 2 to 3.

* Explain that all magnets have invisible force fields that pull things towards them.

* With one magnet on the desk, have one student hold a piece of paper over the magnet, have one student draw what they see and then exchange paper holders and let the other member of the group draw what they see.

* Do the same thing, but this time have the first student hold two magnets with their North ends together and then draw.

Closure: Compare pictures by putting all pictures on the board. Explain that one magnet pulls things towards itself, but two magnets with the same poles push things away from that area.

Assessment: Informally assess pictures on the board, if someone is way off repeat experiment with them separately.


Draw a picture of your one magnet and the design that your metal filings make.

Draw a picture of your two magnets and the design that the metal filings make.

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3
Unit: Magnets Time: 40 min.
Lesson #4 M. Kelly Damiano

Magnet Investigators

Objectives: SWBAT - Distinguish between magnetic and non-magnetic objects.
- List materials that are magnetic.
- Explain that magnetic materials are made of Iron or Steel.
Materials: Grab bag of magnetic and non-magnetic objects for five groups, handout.
* Group student a and explain the group rules.

* Give out grab bags, hand outs, and magnets.

* Let students go to it.

* Walk around to help.

Closure: Make two lists on board. One for things that were attracted to magnets and one of things that were not attracted. Discuss what each of these groups had in common, i.e. what they were made of.

Assessment: Check handout for accuracy.



1. Try to pick up everything in your bag with your magnet.

2. Make two piles, one for everything the magnet picked up or stuck to, and one for everything the magnet did not stick to.

3. List all objects your magnet List all objects your magnet

stuck to here. did not stick to here.

_________________________________________ ___________________________________________
_________________________________________ ___________________________________________
_________________________________________ ___________________________________________
_________________________________________ ___________________________________________
_________________________________________ ___________________________________________
_________________________________________ ___________________________________________

What are the objects your magnet picked up made of?


Go around your class room and find things that your magnet will and will not stick to. Write down what you find below.

Will stick to: Will NOT stick to:

____________________________________ ______________________________________________
____________________________________ ______________________________________________
____________________________________ _______________________________________________

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3

Unit: Magnets Time: 40 min.

Lesson #5 M. Kelly Damiano

Where Does A Magnet Work?


Objectives: SWBAT - Make predictions before doing scientific investigations.

- List objects that magnets can and can not work through.

- Explain why magnets do not work through certain barriers.

Materials: Paper clips, and 12 of each ; construction paper, thin wood, glass jar, tin can, and plastic cup. Hand- out.

Procedure: *Talk about what a prediction is.

* Have students make their own predictions.

*** Make sure students understand that we are talking about the magnet attracting metal through these materials, not being attracted to these materials.

* Let kids investigate!

Closure: Bring class back as a group and discuss what they found out.

Assessment: Show of hands during closure activity.

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3

Unit: magnets Time: 40 min.

Lesson # 6 M. Kelly Damiano

The World Is A Big Magnet

Making compasses and temporary magnets


Objectives: SWBAT - Recall which direction a compass always points.

- Describe the basic mechanics of a compass.

- Explain how Earth is like a giant magnet.

- Create a temporary magnet.

- Create a compass.

Materials: Globe, 12 of each; wide mouth plastic cups, cork slices, needles (dulled), dish soap, bar magnets and tape.

Procedure: * Show kids how Earth has a North and South pole.

* Show how magnets have a North and South pole, and if you hang a magnet from a string it will always point North.

* Make temporary magnets (have needle taped to cork ahead of time).

* Follow direction sheet for making compass.

* If there is enough time left over, show affects of magnets on compasses.

Closure: Have everyone point in the direction that their compass is pointing.

Assessment: Check for North on a real compass.

Subject: Science Grade: 2 and 3

Unit: Magnets Time: 40 min.

Lesson #7 M. Kelly Damiano



Objectives: SWBAT - Describe the different ways magnets are made.

- Create an electromagnet.

- Describe the affects of electromagnets when their circuit is broke.

Materials: Work sheets from science book, 12 of each; rubber bands, battery, 2í wire, large nails, and paper clips.

Procedure: Explain how their is three ways to make a magnet and see if anyone can tell you some of those ways. 1. Natural Magnets 2. Temporary Magnets 3. electromagnets.

* Remind Students--- Remember what we did when making the temporary magnets? We got all of the molecules of Iron pulling in one direction.

--- The same thing can be done with electricity.

--- A battery is a form of energy.

* Demonstrate how to make

* Hand out directions and materials

* Walk around to help while students investigate.

Closure: Go over hand out. Write on board how many clips could be picked up. Ask if they can think of an other way to make a magnet stronger? (more Batteries)

Assessment: Hand outs and questions during closure.

EDU 548 - Lesson and Unit Plans - Assessment Page- Main page