Use this activity to model the concept of establishing chemical equilibrium. Students will hook and unhook paperclips to model a reversible reaction at equilibrium. Students work in pairs and start with equal numbers of unhooked (reactants) and hooked (products) paperclips. Once the "reaction" starts, students will work with their parter to establish equilibrium as they hook and unhook paperclips in unison. Three more rounds follow, each round varies slightly.
The activity includes a student handout and data table, along with a powerpoint to guide the activity.
Key Vocabulary: Reversible reactions, reaction rates, chemical equilibrium, dynamic equilibrium, Le Chatelier's Principle.