Polymers – Chains of Molecules!

Polymers are certain materials that have atoms that are bonded together in a link pattern. Atoms are the tiny building blocks of all elements. When atoms bond together, like in polymers, they form molecules! Poly means many and mer or mers means units. Polymers means many units! Some examples of natural polymers are wool, skin, and rubber. A great example of a human-made polymer is plastic! Plastic is made up of atoms that are twisted together in chains. The atoms in polymers have chains of atoms that help make polymers flexible, moldable, and strong. They are flexible because the chains of atoms can be twisted or turned in many different shapes, sometimes even when the object is a solid! It is moldable (or easy to twist into different shapes) because when the polymers get hot, they start to separate. When the material cools down, the atoms settle down in chains of atoms again. The chain-like structure of polymers help the material have more strength. The twisted shape allows more atoms to be present. That makes the object more dense, which makes the material strong, flexible, and moldable.