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vocabulary words for 5th grade force and motion science unit


the invisible force of attraction between all masses in the universe (pull)


statement about how things work in nature that seems to be true

Isaacc Newton

Defined the laws of motion and gravity. Tried to explain motion of the universe.

laws of motion

Three laws, came up by Sir Isaac Newton, that describe how objects move in relation to the forces acting on them.

unbalanced force

an object to start moving, stop moving, or change direction

1st law of motion

an object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion unless acted on by an unbalanced force


the resistance caused when one object is moved in contact with another

2nd law of motion

an object with an unbalanced force acting on it will accelerate in the direction of that force...f=m(a) ; force = mass times acceleration

3rd Law of Motion

for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction


likely to maintain a state of rest unless acted upon by an external force


the amount of matter in an object


(n) the force with which something moves


the ratio between the size of something and a representation of it


A measure of the force of gravity on an object


a change of position of an object


the measure of the speed and the direction of an object


a measurement of force


the measure of an objects distance during a unit of time


push or pull of any kind


any change in the speed or direction of an object's motion


the force that moves an object forward


the force that slows an object down


upward force on an object


the ability to do work


the transfer of energy from one object to another

potential energy

stored energy, energy ready to be released

kinetic energy

the energy of motion

balanced force

two or more forces that are equal and opposite of one another; do not cause change in motion


unit of force

air resistance

frictional force air exerts on a moving object; acts opposite in direction to the object's motion


that which has mass and occupies space; solid, liquid, or gas


The change of a substance from a liquid to a gas


evaporation of water from a plant's leaves


the process of changing from a gas to a liquid or solid state


any form of water that falls from clouds and reaches Earth's surface; rain, snow, sleet, or hail


water that flows over the ground surface rather than soaking into the ground

water cycle

the continuous movement of water between Earth's surface and the air, changing from liquid to gas to liquid


the transfer of energy as heat through touching substances


the transfer of heat by the movement of a liquid or a gas


the transfer of energy by electromagnetic waves; Sun is the main source


a measure of heat


thermal energy that is transferred by conduction, convection, and radiation

chemical change

a change in matter that produces one or more new substances

physical change

A change in size, shape, or state of matter; A change that affects the appearance but not the chemical makeup of a substance

chemical reaction

process that changes one set of chemicals into another set of chemicals


a material that does not conduct heat well


state of matter in which particles are packed tightly together and it maintains its shape


state of matter in which the particles flow past each other and it takes on the shape of its container


matter that does not have a definite shape or volume; has particles that move at high speeds in all directions

law of conservation

In any physical change or chemical reaction, mass is conserved; mass can be neither created nor destroyed.

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