Visualizing Particles

At the very beginning of this unit, you were introduced to the particle theory of matter, which states that matter is made up of tiny particles in constant motion. Unfortunately, the particles that make up matter are so small that we can’t ordinarily see them — not even under a microscope.

However, while we can’t observe these particles with our eyes, we can visualize them in our minds and think about them and what they are doing. And you’d be suprised at how much you can infer about them simply by observing and thinking about the behavior of everyday things like syringes, bubble wrap, rockets, and hot air balloons.