In this activity, students mix different combinations of sand and cement with water. Small tiles of these combinations will be fashioned, left aside to cure and then tested for bending or flexural strength.

By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

  • describe the link between calcium carbonate and cement production
  • appreciate the role water plays in hydrating the cement
  • explain how the sand, cement and water ingredients combine to produce, after curing, a hard end-product
  • recall a simple procedure that can be applied to test the bending or flexural strength of a cement tile
  • recommend a combination of ingredients that gives maximum strength to the tile.

Download the Word file (see link below) for:

  • introduction/background notes
  • what you need
  • what to do
  • student handout.
    Published 20 August 2012