NCERT Class 6 Science Food Sorting Materials into Groups

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Sorting Materials into Groups


We saw that our food and clothes have so much variety in them. Not just food and clothes, there is such a vast variety of objects everywhere. We see around us, a chair, a bullock cart, a cycle, cooking utensils, books, clothes, toys, water, stones and many other objects. All these objects have different shapes, colours and uses (Fig. 4.1). Look around and identify objects that are round in shape. Our list may include a rubber ball, a football and a glass marble. If we include objects that are nearly round, our list could also include objects like apples, oranges, and an earthen pitcher (gharha). Suppose we were looking for objects that are edible. We might include all the items that we have listed in Tables 1.1, 1.2  and 1.3 in Chapter 1. We might alsofind that some of those round shaped objects we just listed out, are also inthis group.

Let us say, we wish to make a group of objects that are made of plastics. Buckets, lunch boxes, toys, water containers, pipes and many such objects, may find a place in this group. There are so many ways to group objects! In the above examples we have grouped objects on the basis of their shape or the materials they are made from. All objects around us are made of one or more materials. These materials may be glass, metal, plastics, wood, cotton, paper, mud or soil. Can you think of more examples of materials?

Activity 1

Let us collect as many objects as possible, from around us. Each of us could get some everyday objects from home and we could also collect some objects from the classroom or from  outside the school. What will we havein our collection? Chalk, pencil, notebook, rubber, duster, a hammer, nail, soap, spoke of a wheel, bat, matchbox, salt, potato! We can also list objects that we can think of, but, cannot bring to the classroom. For example, wall, trees, doors, tractor, road. Separate all objects from this collection that are made from paper or wood. This way we have divided all objects into two groups. One group has the objects that are made from paper or wood while the other group has the objects that are not made of these materials. Similarly, we could separate the things that are used for preparing food. Let us be a little more systematic. List all objects collected, in Table 4.1. Try to identify the materials that each one is made of. It would be fun to make this a large table – collecting information about as many objects as possible. It may seem difficult to find out the materials out of which some of these objects are made. In such cases, discuss with your friends, teacher and parents to identify the materials. What do we find from these tables? First, we grouped objects in many different ways. We then found that objects around us are made of different materials. At times, an object is made of a single material. An object could also be made of many materials. And then again, one material could be used for making many different objects. What decides which material should be used


Have you ever wondered why a tumbler is not made with a piece of cloth? Recall our experiments with pieces of cloth in Chapter 3 and also keep in mind that we generally use a tumbler to keep a liquid. Therefore, would it not be silly, if we were to make a tumbler out of cloth (Fig 4.2)! What we need for a tumbler is glass, plastics, metal or other such material that will hold water. Similarly, it would not be wise to use paper-like materials for cooking vessels. Collect small pieces of different materials – paper, cardboard, wood, copper wire, aluminium sheet, chalk. Do any of these appear shiny? Separate the shiny materials into a group. Now, observe as the teacher cuts each material into two pieces and look at the freshly cut surface (Fig. 4.3). What do you notice? Does the freshly cut surface of some of these materials appear shiny? Include these objects also in the group of shiny materials. Do you notice such a shine or lustre in the other materials, cut them anyway as you can? Repeat this in the class with as many materials as possible and make a list of those with and without lustre. Instead of cutting, you can rub the surface of material with sand paper to see if it has lustre.


1. Name five objects which can be made from wood.

2. Select those objects from the following which shine: Glass bowl, plastic toy, steel spoon, cotton shirt

3. Match the objects given below with the materials from which they could be made. Remember, an object could be made from more than one material and a given material could be used for making many objects.

4. State whether the statements given below are True or False.

(i) Stone is transparent, while glass is opaque.

(ii) A notebook has lustre while eraser does not.

(iii) Chalk dissolves in water.

(iv) A piece of wood floats on water.

(v) Sugar does not dissolve in water.

(vi) Oil mixes with water.

(vii) Sand settles down in water.

(viii) Vinegar dissolves in water.

5. Given below are the names of some objects and materials: Water, basket ball, orange, sugar, globe, apple and earthen pitcher Group them as:

(a) Round shaped and other shapes

(b) Eatables and non eatables

6. List all items known to you that float on water. Check and see if they will float on an oil or kerosene.

7. Find the odd one out from the following:

a) Chair, Bed, Table, Baby, Cupboard

b) Rose, Jasmine, Boat, Marigold, Lotus

c) Aluminium, Iron, Copper, Silver, Sand

d) Sugar, Salt, Sand, Copper sulphate

Please refer to attached file for NCERT Class 6 Science Food Sorting Materials into Groups



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