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Lesson Plans

Archimedes Principle

Author Information

Author: Jan Ciampi - msciampi@yahoo.com
Organization: Summit Academy

Lesson Plan Information

Subject: Science
Category: Physics
Grade Level: Seventh - Ninth


This is a lab activity made from simple and readily available materials that allows students to test Archimedes Principle of Buoyancy.



To understand Archimedes' principle of buoyant force and construct a graph illustrating it.

Educational Resources:

2 two liter bottles (tops cut away just below the hip of the bottle) 1 rock 1 metal object 1 apple 1 ping pong ball 1 hard boiled egg 1 piece of Styrofoam 2 objects of your choice approved by the teacher 1 piece of 1/4-inch tubing 1 Philip's screw driver 1 Bunsen burner 1 ruler with cm markings You will also need to share the use of the triple beam scales.

Reference Materials:

Activity Plan:

Procedure: 1. Collect all materials and then check with your teacher before proceeding. 2. Read through all the directions before beginning. 3. Construct an overflow container from one of the two liter bottles. Heat the tip of the screwdriver over the Bunsen burner flame. (Ask your teacher to light it.) Melt a hole with the screwdriver into the plastic container 4 cm from the top of the container. 4. Force the 1/4" tubing into the hole and secure a TIGHT fit so as not to allow any water to leak out. 5. Place a beaker or cup below the tubing "spout" to catch water overflow from the container. 6. Fill the container with water until water just starts to flow through the tubing. When the water stops flowing through the tubing you have reached the proper water level to conduct the experiment. 7. Find the mass of each item on the balance before placing the item in the overflow container. Record this information in a data table. 8. Place the item in the overflow container. Find the mass of the water that was displaced by the item and record in the data table. 9. Repeat steps seven and eight for all the items. 10. When all items have been tested, record your findings on a graph illustrating mass of an object vs mass of water displaced. What is Archimedes' Principle? Did your data prove or disprove his theory?

Method of Learning:



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