Science KS1/KS2: How is steel made?

Curious Cat shows the children footage of iron ore being mined, before sending them off to a steel works.

An expert shows them piles of rock in the raw materials yard and explains how a blast furnace works.

The children observe the iron being turned into steel in a B.O.S. plant.

Next, they watch the solid steel being rolled and shaped into coils.

The guide then takes the children to a biscuit tin factory where they see the steel cut, printed and shaped into biscuit tins.

The children take their own biscuit tins back to the classroom and tell Curious Cat everything that they've learned.

This is from the series: Curious Cat Steel, Electricity, Sewage

Teacher Notes

Students could be asked to recap the raw materials required to make steel.

They could explore how the characteristics of each of the raw materials – iron ore, coal and limestone – change when they turn into steel.

Where possible students could look at and handle some examples of each material and describe its properties.

Students could then draw a flow diagram of the steel-making process as described in this clip.

This clip could be used to explore how metal is used in everyday life.

Challenge students to draw up tables for a study in their classroom or home, describing an object which contains metal, the kind of metal it contains, the property of that metal (conducts heat, is light, is waterproof and so on) and the related use.

Alternatively, the students could imagine that they are founding a metal factory to build robots.

Using the processes of steel production shown in this clip, students could take this as a starting point to explain the process involved in building the bodies for their robot.

What metal would they choose? Would the body be thick, thin or incorporate parts which are both?

Curriculum Notes

This clip will be relevant for teaching Science at KS1 and KS2 in England and Foundation Phase in Wales.

Also Foundation and KS1 in Northern Ireland and Early/1st/2nd levels in Scotland.

More from the series: Curious Cat

How is electricity made?
What happens to our sewage?
How are bricks made?
How are crayons made?
How are TV programmes made?
How is glass made?
How is paper made?
How is wool made?