Unit 4 -Intro to Chemistry (Optional)

Essential Questions

  1. How does the atomic structure of an element determine its physical and chemical properties? For example, Hydrogen and Helium differ by only one proton and one electron, but Hydrogen is highly flammable, while Helium is extremely non‐reactive, why is that?
  2. Why and how do atoms form chemical bonds with each other, and how are chemical changes represented? For example, why do atoms of Oxygen tend to arrange themselves as molecules of O2 in nature?
  3. How can we discover what substances (elements and compounds) are present in a complex mixture such as soil, blood, air, tap water, etc?  


2. Introduction to Chemistry
  1. Atomic Structure | Size of the Atom Video |
    1. Nucleus
      1. Protons
      2. Neutrons
        1. Isotopes
    2. Electron Cloud
      1. Electrons
        1. Ions
  2. Periodic Table
    1. Atomic Number
      1. | Periodic Table |
    2. Atomic Weight
      1.  | Chem Intro Activity | Ions and Isotopes |
    3. Periodicity
      1. Families
        1. | Periodic Table w/Electron Configurations | Families Presentations*|
    4. Non-metals
    5. Metals
    6. Semi-conductors
  3. Chemical Reactions
    1. Valence Electrons
      1. Lewis Dot Structure
        1. | Lewis Dot Structure Worksheet |
    2. Bonding
      1. Ionic
      2. Covalent
        1. | Water Conductor Video |
      3. Metallic
      4. Hydrogen Bonding
        1. | Bonding Activity | Chemical Bonding Presentation |
    3. Compounds
      1. Ionic Compounds
      2. Conservation of Mass
    4. Exothermic and Endothermic
    5. Chemical Equations
      1. Products
      2. Reactants
        1. | Chemical Reactions Lab |
  4. States of Matter
    1. Kinetic Molecular Theory
    2. Solid
    3. Liquid
    4. Gas
    5. Plasma
      1. | States of Matter Activity |
  5. Physical and Chemical Properties
    1. Density
      1. | Sinking Ice Cube Demo | Erlenmeyer Alcohol Exchange |
    2. Mixtures
      1. | Separating Mixtures Lab |
    3. pH
    4. Melting/Boiling Point
    5. Conductivity
    6. Reactivity
    7. Magnetism



Essential Learnings

  1. Explains that all elements have physical and chemical properties, which are determined by their atomic structure and are reflected in the element’s location in the Periodic Table.
    1. Describes the basic structure of the atom and uses atomic models, such as the Bohr model to explain composition of matter.
    2. Recognizes that the Periodic Table is organized by atomic number and electron levels (horizontally into series/periods and vertically into families/groups.
    3. Explains why elements in the same family/group of the Periodic Table have similar properties.
    4. Uses the Periodic Table to determine the atomic number and atomic mass of common elements.
    5. Explains that electrons are located in different energy levels in an atom and that the outer electrons determine its chemical properties.
  2. Describes how elements chemically combine to form compounds and that chemical changes can be represented in balanced chemical equations.
      1. Identifies and describes that when two or more atoms chemically combine, they either share electrons (covalent bonding) or transfer electrons (ionic bonding).
      2. Uses a table with the names and formulas of common inorganic ions to write the correct formula for a common ionic compound.
      3. Explains that a chemical equation shows how atoms are rearranged during a chemical change and translates word equations into chemical equations.
      4. Determines whether products and reactants of a chemical equation are balanced in order to show that matter is conserved.
      5. Explains that when a chemical reaction occurs, new substances are formed with new chemical properties.
  3. Uses quantitative measurements and calculations to demonstrate the conservation of mass.
    1. Compares the total mass of all materials before and after a physical interaction.
    2. Recognizes that when matter undergoes physical and chemical changes, the total amount of matter stays the same.
  4. Using the kinetic molecular model of matter, explains and predicts phase changes of matter relative to changes in thermal energy.
    1. Describes the kinetic molecular model for solid, liquid, gas, and plasma including the arrangement, motion, and energy of the particles.
    2. Uses the kinetic molecular model to explain the changes in energy and molecular motion that take place in phase transitions from a solid to a liquid to a gas, and solid to gas, and in the reverse direction.
    3. Distinguishes between temperature and heat.
    4. Interprets a heating curve diagram.
  5. Explains that all substances have chemical and physical properties (density, pH, melting point, conductivity, magnetism, reactivity) that can be measured and used to compare and classify substances.
    1. Measures and describes density.
    2. Describes the difference between elements, compounds, and mixtures.
    3. Uses information (density, pH, melting point, conductivity, magnetism, and reactivity) to classify, identify, and seperate substances.
    4. Seperates mixtures based on their physical and chemical properties.


  • Matter has properties related to its structure that can be measured and used to identify, classify and describe substances or objects.
    1. Students know and understand common properties, forms, and changes in matter and energy
  • Matter can neither be created nor destroyed.
    1. Students know and understand common properties, forms, and changes in matter.


Warm Ups

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