CERN Accelerating science

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What is matter?

First let's find out what MATTER is. Matter is the "stuff" that every known object around us is made of: anything you can touch is made of matter ... including you!

What is this "stuff"? It's easy to think of a wall as made out of bricks, and the sea as made out of drops of water. In the same way, everything you see around you (including the bricks of the wall!) are made out of little bricks.

It's like the huge lego constructions you see sometimes in toy shops: those cars, helicopters, houses and people are all made the same way, starting from simple lego bricks!

Well, it's the same for our world: everything is made with bricks, except they are so small you can't see them. What are these "bricks"? They are called particles. There are three types, electrons, protons and neutrons (like having three different colors of lego).