This product comes in 2 versions: PDF and PowerPoint for displaying. I have also included a booklet for the student's interactive notebooks and a page of printable SnapCubes in case you don't already have this manipulative in your classroom.
Download the Preview above to get a closer look!
First, as a class, you can model how to do the interactive activity using manipulatives (I recommend using Snap Cubes if you have them, but if not, you can also use Legos, colored paper cut into squares, colored candies, etc...)
In this activity, the idea of reactants and products are reinforced. In addition, students create atoms, compounds, and molecules of some common substances and are able to see how the atoms are rearranged (but not lost or gained) as they undergo a chemical reaction - Law of Conservation of Mass.
Teacher prep: Just print the "blank mats" (without the answers) on sturdy paper (and laminate for durability, if you prefer). Pre-Assemble the kits with the needed number of Snap Cubes - provided in teacher instructions (or whatever manipulative you've chosen to use). After students have a chance to build the equation, reveal the answer with the PowerPoint and students can check for accuracy.
There are many extensions you could add to this activity, such as having the students calculate the masses of the atoms of each element present on both the reactant and product side of the equation. Or you could show them the visual model and have them create the chemical equation using chemical formulas, coefficients and subscriptions.