This paper reports upon a study addressing teaching and learning about solubility to Turkish first-year secondary school students ( age 14 - 15). The principal aim of the research was to investigate the impact on students' understanding of solubility, of introducing a simple particle model of matter. A teaching intervention to fit within the existing chemistry curriculum was designed, which explained macroscopic and quantitative aspects of solubility in terms of particles. To this extent, the teaching intervention met the requirements of the existing curriculum, and the teaching intervention was conducted under all the time and other restrictions imposed by the Turkish system. Students' performance on test questions about solubility was assessed before and after instruction, and after 6 months. In addition, students in a similar class, following typical teaching about solubility, completed identical test questions. Findings suggest that it is possible to design a teaching sequence that introduces a simple particle model of matter in such a way that students can successfully use it to explain various solubility phenomena. However, students who followed such instruction did not significantly out-perform others who did not follow it, in all aspects of the conceptual domain. There is some evidence of long-term retention of particulate ideas by students, suggesting the possibility that this might be drawn upon in future teaching and learning. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the kinds of claims that can be supported from a study such as this.