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Summary Science Background

Magnets have a mysterious, Earth has an enormous
The Mystery invisible force that people have
tried to understand for
centuries. The Mystery of
magnetic field, just as a small
bar magnet has a small
magnetic field. So Earth acts

of Magnets Magnets explores how magnets
attract and repel each other.
Students will learn how
like a huge magnet. Like any
magnet, Earth has magnetic
north and south poles. That’s
By Pamela Bliss magnetism relates to Earth and why a compass works. The
c e rtain animal behaviors. poles of the magnetized needle
Magnets are found in nature on a compass align with
and people have learned to use Earth’s magnetic field. So the
magnets and magnetism in north pole of the needle
many different ways to make always points to Earth’s
their lives easier. Magnetic magnetic north pole. But this
force can be combined with is not the same as the
electricity to create temporary geographic North Pole. Over
magnets that provide time, Earth’s magnetic poles
electricity. Magnets help move, but the geographic
doctors to study how the poles do not. Currently, the
human body and brain work magnetic north pole is in
and are used in a wide variety northern Canada, about
of fields and applications. 1,250 km (775 miles) from
the geographic North Pole.

Learning Objectives
Science P rocess Skills Reading Skills
• Describe how magnets act on objects • Explore the relationship between Skill Focus Genre: Expository
and other magnets electricity and magnetism • Inferring Skill Focus
• Explain how Earth is a magnet • Understand how people continue to S u p p o rting Skills • Identify main idea
• Identify discoveries that people use magnets to solve problems • Communicating and details
have made throughout history
• Observing • Relate words
about magnetism
• Interpreting data S u p p o rting Skills
• Make generalizations
• Summarize
• Identify cause-and-
effect relationships
66 The Mystery of Magnets
Focus on Reading
Before Reading columns with partners. They Vocabulary Strategy:
can return to the chart after Relate Words
Activate Prior Knowledge reading to identify what they Activity Master, Page 70
Have students look at the cover learned and what they still Have students read the title of
of the book and then ask them want to find out. the book, The Mystery of
to think about what they know Preview Magnets. Explain to students
about magnets. Ask: Give students time to preview that the vocabu l a ry words they
What is a magnet? What the book, paying attention to will be learning all relate in
does it do? ch apter titles, photos, captions, some way to magnets and
and special features. Ask: magnetism. Students can use
How can you use magnets?
the glossary to find the
What information is shown in
Write students’ ideas on a meaning of each word.They
the photos?
K-W-L ch a rt . Explain that in then write a sentence telling
the first column, students will What do the headings tell how each word relates to
write what they know about you about the topics covered magnets and magnetism.
magnets and magnetism. In in this book? Students will be using
the second column, they will Set Purpose these words:
write what they want to know Ask students whether this book attract
or questions they have about reminds them of other books compass
magnets and magnetism. they have read. Ask: electromagnet
magnetic field
Have students copy the K-W-L What do you want to find out pole
chart into their notebooks by reading this book? repel
and complete the first two

What I Know What I Want To Know What I Learned

Correlation to National Standards
Writing Skills Science Reading/Language Arts
W riting Focus • Scientific inquiry (K–4, 5–8) • Read to understand magnets and their
• Write a report (expository) • Light, heat, electricity, and magnetism importance in our world
(K–4) • Apply a wide range of strategies to
S u p p o rting Skills
• Science and technology in local comprehend and interpret texts
• Use the writing process
challenges (K–4, 5–8) • Use visual and written language to
• Use an outline
• Science as a human endeavor communicate
• Conduct research
(K–4, 5–8) • Conduct research
Speaking/Listening • Properties of objects and materials • Use the writing process
• Give an oral presentation (K–4)

The Mystery of Magnets 67
Focus on Reading (continued)

During Reading Meeting Writing and Research:
Individual Needs Write a Report
Read Strategically: Identify For specific strategies on Activity Master, Page 72
Main Idea and Details meeting individual needs, see Students can choose an
Activity Master, Page 71 page 90–95. invention that uses magnets
Assign each ch apter of the book to help people do work. Have
as independent reading. Have After Reading students find out about the
students use the Activity Master inventor, d e s c ribe the
on page 71 as a study guide to Responding
invention, and explain how
help them identify main ideas Initiate a class discussion to
this invention helps people.
and details of each ch apter. On assess reading comprehension.
Students can choose an
the Activity Master, students Ask:
invention discussed in the book
provide supporting details for What are some of the ways we or they can choose a different
the main ideas of Chapters 1 use magnets eve ry day? (See invention. Use the Activity
and 2.They write the main idea pages 12, 19, and 22–25 Master on page 72 to help
and supporting details for in the student book.)
students plan their report.
Chapter 3. Remind students (make generalizations)
that to find the main idea, they How does a magnet work? (See
Communicating: Speaking/Listening
should ask themselves what the pages 6–13.) (summarize) Give an oral presentation
chapter is mostly about. They In small groups, students can
Where are some places magnets read their re p o rts aloud.
might then turn each main idea occur in nature? (See pages
into a question and read to find 4–5, 12–13, and 14–15.) Students reading aloud should
details to answer the question. (summarize) ✓ speak clearly
Strategy Tip: Paraphrase What effect does electricity have ✓ make eye contact with listeners
on a magnetic field? (See pages ✓ use emphasis as appropriate
Suggest that students restate
in their own words any 18–19.) (identify cause-and-effect Listeners should
passages—from sentences to relationships)
✓ listen politely
entire paragraphs—they would What tools have scientists used to ✓ determine the main points of
like to clarify for themselves. better understand magnets and the report
The process of paraphrasing magnetism? (Answers will ✓ ask questions to clarify
requires students to identify the vary.) (draw conclusions)
i m p o rtant ideas in the passages
and summarize them. If
students are still having
difficulty restating a particular
passage, they can ask for
clarifi c ation during the follow-
up class discussion.

68 The Mystery of Magnets
Extend and Assess
Focus on Science Answers to Think If you Multiple-Choice Test
stroked the nail only five times, Use the mu l t i p l e - choice test on
Thinking Like a Scientist its magnetic force would be weaker. page 113.
Process Skill: I n f e rring If you stroked it 40 times, the
Answers for page 9:The metal magnetic force would be stronger; Cross-Curricular Connection
objects (the wire hanger, scissors, can Yes, the strength of the magnet
opener, and soft-drink can) would would be affected. Mathematics
likely be magnetic. Have students use magnets to
Assessment Options attract paper clips from a pile
Answers for pages 26: Magnet B and record the number of paper
is stronger because it attracted the Use the following assessment clips attracted. After repeating
paper clip to itself. options to assess students’ this five times, students can find
Check It Out:The magnetic force understanding of The Mystery the average number of paper
of magnet A is strong enough to of Magnets. clips the magnet will attract by
attract through the index card. Questions adding all five numbers and
Use the following questions then dividing by 5. Using this
during individual conferences info rm ation, students can
Activity Master, Page 73
or ask students to write the discuss which magnets are
Students can use the Activity
answers in their notebooks: stronger and which are weaker.
Master on page 73 to practice
making inferences. Remind 1 Name two ways magnets are Home-School Connection
students that when they infer, used every day.
they look at the evidence 2 Explain how an electromagnet works. Students and their parents can
and use what they already 3 What are two places where magnets look for magnets and objects
know to make a good guess occur in nature? that contain magnets around
about something. 4 Explain the magnetic attraction their home and make a list of
between the north and south poles different magnets they find.
Hands-on Science of a magnet. They can discuss how these
5 What are three ways scientists magnets help people do work
Summary Students use a learned about magnetism?
or make people’s lives easier.
few simple mat e rials to Assessment Activity
c re ate a temporary and a Students can create a magnet
permanent magnet. book. Have students choose
Tips Have students take special four main ideas about magnets
care to stroke the nail on the and provide details to support
magnet in the same direction their choices. Students can use
on only one end of the magnet diagrams or sketches to
to magnetize it. If they stroke explain ideas.
back and fo rt h , the nail will Books should
not magnetize. ✓ clearly address four important topics
✓ use correct grammar and mechanics
✓ include simple illustrations

The Mystery of Magnets 69
Name ____________________________________________ The Mystery of Magnets
Vocabulary: Relate Words
The words below are from The Mystery of Magnets. Each word is re l ated to
magnets and magnetism in some way. In the ch a rt below, write the meaning
of each word. Use the glossary to ch e ck the meanings. Then write a sentence
for each word that shows how it re l ates to magnets and magnetism.

Word Meaning My Sentence



e l e c t romagnet

magnetic field



70 Activity Master Vocabulary
Name ____________________________________________ The Mystery of Magnets
Reading: Identify Main Idea and Details
The main idea of a chapter is what the chapter is mostly about. Details are
facts and examples that explain the main idea. Finish the ch a rt below with
details and main ideas.

Chapter 1 Main Idea: Magnets are objects that can attract or repel objects
without touching them.

Chapter 2 Main Idea: Throughout history, people have discovered new things about magnets.


Chapter 3 Main Idea:


Reading Strategies Activity Master 71
Name ____________________________________________ The Mystery of Magnets
Writing: Use the Writing Process
Write a Report

You will write a re p o rt about an invention that uses magnets to help people
do work.You can write your re p o rt on an invention from the book or you
can find one on your own. Use the outline below to organize your ideas for
your re p o rt .

The invention I will write about is

I. Details about the inventor



II. Ways this invention helps people



III. How this invention uses magnets (Include a simple sketch in the space below or on the back
of this page.)



IV. Who benefits most from this invention or who uses it most often



Include other interesting information you found. Write your report on a separate sheet of paper.

72 Activity Master Writing
Name ____________________________________________ The Mystery of Magnets
Thinking Like a Scientist: Inferring
Scientists infer, or make a good guess, based on evidence and background
knowledge about how or why things are the way they are. Then they can do
further experiments to see if they inferred correctly.You can infer as scientists
do. Read the situations below and infer to explain what is happening.

1. You try to put three pieces of paper up on the refrigerator with one magnet, and all the
papers fall down. What can you infer happened?

2. You want to connect two magnets together. One magnet has the north pole marked N and
south pole marked S. The other magnet’s poles are not marked. How can you infer which
end of the unmarked magnet is the north pole?

3. You are filling a backpack to go hiking. As you put a compass into the backpack, the needle of the
compass moves as it goes past the magnetic clasp on the backpack. What can you infer about why
the compass needle moved?

4. You have a metal object placed near a magnet, but the magnet does not attract the metal
object. You move the object closer to the magnet, and then the magnet attracts it. What can
you infer about the strength of the magnet?

Science Skills Activity Master 73