Home Page

Science (Monday)

Monday 22nd February

WALT carry out a fair test


In our science lessons we have looked at different materials and their properties. Today we would like you to carry out a fair test using paper as the material. You will be answering...


Which paper structure is the strongest?

Did you know that the same sized piece of paper can hold different amounts of weight based on how it is shaped?


To find the answer to this question you will need to make 3 different structures out of paper: one with a square cross-section, one with a triangular cross-section and one with a circular cross-section.  You will then test them to see how strong they are by placing books on each one.  How many books can it hold before it collapses?

You might want to watch this video in stages. The end will tell you the answers!

Before you start your challenge have a think about these questions:

  • How are you going to make your test fair?  What things will you need to keep the same?
  • What is your prediction and why? Which column do you think will be the weakest?  Which column do you think will be the strongest? Remember, a prediction is what you think will happen.


During your experiment, record your results using a table.  Can you draw your own table?  It might look something like this...

Paper shape Prediction of how many books How many books?



After your experiment, think about your results.  Were your predictions correct? What do you think your results show?  (That’s your conclusion!) Which was the strongest?  Which was the weakest? Can you try to explain why? 


Super Scientist Challenges

  1. This investigation answered the question `Which paper column is the strongest?’.  Can you think of another, different, way we could try to find out the answer to this question?
  2. Repeat the experiment with card instead of paper. Is the result the same? 
  3. Repeat the experiment with different shapes of paper or card. Are the results the same?
  4. Using your strongest structure, how tall can you build it?


We would love to see what you found out.  Save photos to Purple Mash.