The Three Basic States (Phases) of Matter

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This activity was designed for blind learners, but all types of learners can explore the three states of matter by examining tactile models that illustrate the characteristics of particles in each state. Visually impaired learners and sighted learners can also work with marbles that illustrate particles' relation to each other.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 11 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Model


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 3 plastic plates for each student
  • Approximately 50 marbles
  • Large clear plastic bags
  • Tactile diagrams of solid, liquid and gas particles.


  • Mathematics
    • Measurement
      • Units of Measurement
  • Physical Sciences
    • States of Matter
      • Solids
      • Liquids
      • Gases
      • Changes of Phase


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, Perkins School for the Blind,