Ever shy away from a chemical reactions activity because it was too hard, too risky, or too confusing? This chemical reactions lesson is simple, straightforward, and safe.
It features 3 separate chemical reactions that happen right in your students' hands.
Chemical reaction #1: Students begin with an old penny (finally- a use for those things!) and we notice it's dull. Since we know it didn't look that way on the day it was made, we talk about the chemical reaction that's already been going on for decades- oxidation.
A PowerPoint will lead you and your students as they write on the handout the chemical formula for this first chemical reaction. And just to make sure we haven't lost anyone, we'll provide a plain English translation of the formula.
Chemical reaction #2: This chemical reaction happens when we mix vinegar with salt (with goggles on). That produces just enough acid for what we need. We'll pause again and write the chemical formula and English translation for this on the handout.
Since water and salt are two compounds we happen to be using, the PowerPoint will explain how water is a covalent molecule, and salt an ionic.
Chemical reaction #3: The last chemical reaction occurs when students dip the old, dull penny into the solution we just made. What comes out is NOT old and dull-looking! Once more we'll write the chemical formula and translation of this chemical reaction on the handout.
Key words: chemical formula, covalent bond, ionic bond, chemical reaction