What are the building blocks of matter?

Atoms are the building blocks of matter.


The atom is made of many smaller pieces, known as subatomic particles. Every atom contains a central core called the nucleus, made of particles called protons and neutrons. The matter is defined as anything that has mass and takes up space (it has volume). Mass is the amount of matter in an object. The three states of matter are

  • solid,
  • liquid
  • gas.

The particle model represents particles by small, solid spheres. For example, water exists as ice, liquid water, and gaseous steam.


In solids, the forces keeping the particles together are relatively strong, and the particles stay very close to each other. As a result, the particles can vibrate, but they are not moving around much. This is why solids are hard and rigid.


In liquids, the forces between the particles are weaker than in solids. Particles are still fairly close together but can move around freely. Liquids can flow around inside a container and don’t have any particular fixed shape.


Gases are difficult to relate to because they are often invisible but found all around. Gases are also responsible for the force of explosions.

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