Is water a solid, liquid or gas?

Is water a solid, liquid or gas?

Find out about the three states of matter with some fun games.

What does water look like?

Is water always a liquid? After all, you can run a bath from a tap and drink water from a glass. What about on a hot day? You don't want a warm drink, so you put some ice in the glass.  Well, that's water too.  Look at that hot bath again.  Do you see the steam rising? Water again!


So how can water be three different things at the same time?  It's all to do with "states of matter".

There are three states of matter:

Solid - like your head (Knock, knock!)
Liquid - like your blood (Yuck!)
Gas - like your breath (Smelly!)

Water can change between these three states.

steam or vapour

To make water change from one state to another we must change its temperature.  To do that we need to heat it up or cool it down.

If you but a balloon full of water in the freezer, it cools down and you end up with a solid lump of ice (if your parents let you try this then add some food colouring to the water and then peel the balloon off the ice like below. Beautiful!)


Ice Balloon Photo (c) Raising Sparks

If your Gran makes a cup of tea, she boils a kettle until steam rises from the spout. The hot water has turned into a gas.

Trying breathing onto a mirror and see what happens.  Your warm breath makes a mist on the glass.  The water vapour from your huff'n'puff has cooled on the glass and turned back into liquid drops of water.

So let's play some games to find out what we've learnt.

In the first game, see if you can help Steve from Deadly 60 to survive in the Arctic.

You need to change the state of water to help him.

In the next game you must give Ruff the dog a helping hand while Chet is away on holiday.  Afterwards, whay not try the BBC Bitesize quiz to test your knowledge?


Have you learned everything there is to know about the three states of matter?

Click here to try out the quiz. Good luck!