Heat Transfer! Raps! Singing! Oh My!

Mandy Lockhart

Lesson Goals

Students will use their own words to define types of heat transfer and give at least two examples in real life. Students will use words, rhythm or song and body movement to showcase their knowledge of heat transfer.

A culminating activity that puts to work the students’ knowledge of the three types of heat transfer. Students work cooperatively to create a rap or song that tells the definition of one type of heat transfer and gives examples.


Science notebook
Notes about heat transfer

Extra notebook paper and pencils
Lyric sheet to the Solids, Liquids, and Gases song


INTRODUCTION (15 mins total)

(5 minutes) Ask whole class if they are able to define what heat transfer is in their own words. Call on several students to share. Students should reference their notes to come up with a working definition. Depending on the group of students this can be done as individuals or allow for groups to work together. (5 minutes)

(5-10 minutes) Using their words, come to a consensus as a class to share and record it on chart paper. Next, assign each table group a type of heat transfer (conduction, convection, radiation) and have the groups discuss 1) A definition in their own words and write it down 2) At least two examples of their type of heat transfer. HAND OUT SEVERAL SHEETS OF NOTEBOOK PAPER PER TABLE. TABLE GROUPS NEED TO RECORD INFORMATION ON THESE PAPERS FOR THE REST OF THE LESSON This is an easy place to differentiate by being mindful of which groups get which heat transfer. Conduction is the easiest for students to understand, then radiation, then convection in my experience.

ACTIVITY 1 (20 minutes total)
15-20 minutes for the listening and short discussion
Explain to the students that one way we learn and commit new information to memory and create long term knowledge is by putting things to a rhythm, beat or song. Today, each group will use rap or song to explain their type of heat transfer. Be sure you are logged on to Discovery Education and you already have the Lodge McCammon song about matter pulled up. Hand out the lyric sheet to each student so they can follow along. Play the song and listen together.
https://gtm-media-2.discoveryeducation.com//v2.3/LodgeAudio/Shake.pdf (LYRICS)
https://app.discoveryeducation.com/player/view/assetGuid/0297c864-5c7f-41ee-a20e-a9e0becb243d (LINK TO SONG)

After listening, ask students to share what things they notice about the song (does it give a definition to science terms? Does explain the word or process? Does it give examples?) and have them support their answers by referencing the text/lyrics in front of them. Talk about what is catchy about the song, why might it be easier to learn a song than to just learn a definition? Can we put body movements to parts of the song to help us remember essential parts (moving fast when talking about the particles speeding up?)

Wrap up the discussion and explain that each group, armed with their notebooks, group definition, and examples will need to write a song or rap that explains their type of heat transfer. Each group also needs to add several body movements to their song/rap that SHOW a process or idea presented in the transfer of heat.

ACTIVITY 2 (40-60 minutes)
Students use the remainder of the hour to begin writing and coming up with their song/rap. At the end they will perform for the class. You can have students write feedback to each other on post it notes or paper. Use the Two Stars and a Wish format to recognize things the group did well and one improvement. You will circulate to be sure that the definition is correct and examples are correct and to give feedback. More likely than not, you will need to use more than one class period to allow for writing time, practice and performance.

You can have students perform for their class, for a younger grade, or group of parents

Differentiation Approaches

Assign groups to work together, allow for students to work as individuals, create groups beforehand based on ability and then assign the type of heat transfer based on those groups. For groups that have depth of knowledge you could have students write for all 3 types of transfer.


No formal assessment. You can have students use the Two Stars and a Wish format on paper or verbally. As each group goes through and performs, ask for two great things and one wish for improvement.

Follow Up and Extension Ideas

Extension: have students write for all three types of heat transfer, have them create a more involved dance to get the ideas across.

Additional Details

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