On 25th June 1923, thirteen-year-old Mavis recorded her findings following a science experiment. She was attending Mont Albert Central School at the time.

Melting Point: Cooling Curve Method

Melting point is that temperature at which the solid and the liquid forms of a substance can co’exist without change of temperature.


Paraffin wax, centigrade thermometer, two small text tubes containing paraffin wax and naphthalene, each placed in larger test tube partly filled with water and then placed into a beaker of water. Arrange on retort stand the spirit lamp underneath.


Raise temperature of substance above melting point until all the substance is melted. Remove lamp and allow substance to cool slowly, and note temperature at regular ½ min. intervals. Graph your results. Find the two turning points on the graph and average their results. This will give you Melting Point.

  • Melting Point 77.5 Naphthalene
  • Melting point 59.5 Paraffin Wax

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Page of science book.

Pages from Mavis' Science book, 25th June 1923.

Page of science book.