There isn't much money left in most 2014-2015 science department budgets. For inexpensive chemistry lab ideas, buy my lab book "Chemistry on a Budget" for $20.56 at amazon.com or $23 at lulu.com. It will take a few weeks to get to you, so order now!
This book contains 13 labs using consumable materials purchased from local stores. There are two versions of each lab, one with a ten-question conclusion and one with directions for a full lab report. This way the teacher has the option! Each lab is two pages to allow for one two-sided handout.
I revisited Atomic Structure last week, and I’ve just realized that I haven't written anything about Nuclear Chemistry! Oops… I did talk about atomic symbol notation briefly on 02/26/2014, but it was just a reference.
Some teachers cover Nuclear Chemistry at the end of the school year -- it can be useful to review Atomic Structure while covering this topic, which prepares a little for final examinations. In my later teaching years, I would cover Nuclear Chemistry while I was teaching Atomic Structure to save time during the school year. Either approach is a valid choice.
Atomic structure at an introductory level is typically protons, neutrons and electrons. I posted previously about this on 02/16/2014 and 02/04/2015. Symbol notation is a typical method to show a lot of information quickly and the student is expected to be able to interpret it.
Here’s one example:
Student knowledge of Symbol Notation is necessary because it is used to represent subatomic particles, especially in Nuclear Reactions.
A useful table of subatomic particles is on Page 7 in Table O of the NYS Chemistry Regents Examination Reference Table. http://www.kentchemistry.com/newRT.pdf
Isotopes of elements are also named using the name of the element, then a dash, then the mass number. For example, the symbol above would also be known as Helium-4 . A typical example would be hydrogen, which is Hydrogen-1, Hydrogen-2 (aka deuterium) and Hydrogen-3 (tritium). The atomic number (proton #) does not change with the element, but the neutron number can change, providing various mass numbers or isotopes of the element.
A typical skill for this unit is that of balancing nuclear equations. It’s a pretty reasonable skill, the student makes sure that the total of the mass numbers and atomic numbers on the left side of the equation equal the total of the mass numbers and atomic numbers on the right.
Point out to students that if they are given the atomic symbol, they can determine the atomic number (# protons) using The Periodic Table.
Here is one link with several Nuclear Equation worksheets:
Here is a 10-minute video with an introduction to Nuclear Chemistry:
Check out the Topic List to help you to find past Blog entries. I hope it helps!
Have a good vacation!