This unit, sophomore chemistry students at Roberto Clemente Community Academy are learning all about the Periodic Table. Students began the school year by being introduced to the concepts of relationships, patterns, and forms. Students learned about physical and chemical properties in order to understand the patterns found in the periodic table, and eventually complete their summative assessment, which involves metals, nonmetals, and metalloids.
In order to gain a better understanding of physical and chemical properties, students analyzed the properties of salt, sugar, baking soda, and cornstarch to determine the identity of a mystery substance that was composed of two of the substances. By examining the substances’ shape, flashpoint, and reaction with iodine and vinegar, students were able to determine the identity of their mystery substance.
With newfound knowledge of physical and chemical properties, students then began to explore the concepts of metals, non-metals, and metalloids for their IB summative assessment.
For their summative assessment, students were required to complete parts of the scientific method while examining the relationships between patterns in the periodic table. More specifically, students were given 8 elements (aluminum, carbon, copper, iodine, magnesium, silicon sulfur, and zinc) and tasked with classifying them as metals, non-metals, and metalloids using their knowledge of physical and chemical properties.
Metals are generally silver/gray, lustrous (shiny), malleable, react with acids, and are good conductors of electricity. Non-metals are generally dull, brittle, do not react with acid, and are poor conductors of electricity. Finally, metalloids have properties of both metals and non-metals.
In order to classify the elements, students examined their properties including: color, luster, malleability, reaction with hydrochloric acid, reaction with copper (II) chloride, and their electrical conductivity. Based on the observed properties and student knowledge, students were able to properly categorize the elements and learn about the patterns in the periodic table.
By: Celene Hernandez