States of Matter

  • Most of the matter around you is in one of three states, also known as phases of matter—solid, liquid, or gas. Each state can be described by its physical properties of volume and shape. You can observe shape by looking carefully at a material. There are manyways to measure volume, the amount of space matter takes up. Forexample, you might use a graduated cylinder to measure the volume of a liquid. To classify matter as a solid, liquid, or gas, you need to observe how the volume and shape of the sample can change.