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Learn about floating objects by building a boat

Suitable For

Grade 2



Time Required

 <1 Hour



What’s it about?

‘Matter’ is everything in the universe that has mass and occupies space. ‘Density’ is a physical property that all mater possess. ‘Density’ can be used to compare two substances that have the same ‘volume’, but their ‘mass’ is not the same. This means that they contain different amounts of ‘matter’.

Objects with more weight or ‘mass’ per given volume is ‘denser’ than objects with less ‘mass’ per the same volume. When such objects are put together, less dense substances will always ‘float’ on top of more dense substances. Let’s see how this works with the following science experiment:

Topics covered


What will I need?


Procedure (Method)

Unfortunately, this section is only available in the e-book version of the project.

How does it work?

Unfortunately, this section is only available in the e-book version of the project.

This science experiment works because less dense objects always float on more dense objects. Water is a very dense substance and the aluminium foil boat floats on top of it because its mass is less than the mass of an equal volume of water it displaces. A boat will be able to carry weight, including its own weight, more or less equal in mass to the amount of water that the body of the boat displaces or ‘push out of place’.

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