Topic 7.3 

Essential idea: It is believed that all the matter around us is made up of fundamental particles called quarks and leptons. It is known that matter has a hierarchical structure with quarks making up nucleons, nucleons making up nuclei, nuclei and electrons making up atoms and atoms making up molecules. In this hierarchical structure, the smallest scale is seen for quarks and leptons.

Nature of science: (1) Predictions: Our present understanding of matter is called the standard model, consisting of six quarks and six leptons. Quarks were postulated on a completely mathematical basis in order to explain patterns in properties of particles. (2) Collaboration: It was much later that large-scale collaborative experimentation led to the discovery of the predicted fundamental particles.