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The Door Buzzer

1 Plastics


Learn It


  • Plastics are a class of material that are usually synthesised from fossil fuels like oil or natural gas.
  • Plastics are made up of molecules called polymers.
  • Polymers are very long chains of atoms


  • Plastics are so named, because they can deform (stretch, squash, bend) without breaking.

Research It

  • There are many different types of plastic.
  • Use online resources to list some of the uses of the following plastics
    • Polyester
    • Polyvinyl chloride
    • Polyethylene

Learn It

  • There are two main classes of plastic:
    • Thermoplastics
    • Thermosetting polymers.
  • When we heat a thermoplastic, it softens and becomes malleable. This allows us to alter its shape, which will remain after we cool it down.
  • When we heat a thermosetting polymer after it has cooled for the first time, it does not soften and so cannot be reshaped.

Badge It

  • Have a look at this video from the 1940s

  • Explain, with diagrams, what are the differences between thermoplastics and thermosetting polymers.
  • Silver - A reasonable attempt at describing the difference between the types of plastics.
  • Gold - A good explanation, with 3 examples of each.
  • Platinum - An excellent explanation of the different uses of several types of plastics.