We moved on from talking about atoms to talking about molecules and chemical bonds. Since my kids are pretty young, this is just a basic introduction to how bonds are formed and made.
Building Molecules Worksheet: This is a free download.
The screen shot below shows 2 of 3 pages.
We spent several days building different kinds of molecules:
On the first day we built water, oxygen, hydrogen and hydrogen peroxide:
The next day the kids built carbon dioxide, chlorine, ammonia and acetylene gas:
And on the last day they built methane gas, ethylene gas, methanol (wood alcohol), propane gas, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), vinegar and others:
We used EIN-O’s molecule kit. It doesn’t have the best reviews on Amazon, but it was just fine for our needs. It comes with double-bonds (see the red oxygen molecule above) as well as the plain single bond pieces. It is a bit confusing that there would be more than one hole on the hydrogen (white balls), but I just told the kids that was how the balls were made and they were fine with that explanation.
Update: When we did Chemistry again in the Fall of 2015, I opted to get the Molymod MMS-008 Organic Chemistry Molecular Model, Student Set (50 atom parts) (affiliate link) We actually got the Molymod Teacher Set (111 atom parts) – (affiliate link) because we have 3 kids in our family). I would recommend getting a Molymod set because the bonds are flexible and you can do so much more with them.
We are using Real Science-4-Kids Chemistry pre-Level I (affiliate link) as our spine. LD will probably move to Level I Chemistry (affiliate link) soon. I love the cute drawings. This book explains chemistry in a way DD can really understand!
Again, if you’re interested in building the molecules we did you can download the worksheet I made by clicking on this link–Building Molecules Worksheet.
You might also be interested in these posts from our chemistry unit:
- The Size of Atoms – This was a great activity!! We started our chemistry unit a couple weeks ago. We’re doing lots of reading and really enjoying the books in the NOEO curriculum.We loved, What’s Smaller Than a Pygmy Shrew? (affiliate link) It takes a look at protozoa, bacterium, molecules and atoms — even talking about electrons, protons and neutrons… be sure to check out our activities from the beginning of our chemistry unit here.
- States of Matter: Solid, Liquid, Gas Activities
- Molecule Movement Activity – Chemistry Review Worksheet
You may be interested in how we covered this topic when we came back around to it (as the kids got older):
- States of Matter: Solid, Liquid, Gas Learning Activities – this post has a ton of fun hands-on activities! I also shared a link to some free Montessori sorting cards I found there.
- Chemistry Experiments for Kids (Grade 2) – Matter is neither created nor destroyed, Acids and Bases Experiment
- Chemistry Experiments for Kids (Grade 2) – Mixtures, Chromatography, DNA Kit
- Oil and Water Fireworks Activity
- Molecules to the Max Chemistry DVD – IMAX movie now available on DVD
Chemistry Packet: Introduction to the Periodic Table
I am excited to share our new chemistry unit with you! As you know, we love hands-on activities and I want to show you some of the fun ways we explored the periodic table and touched on topics like valence electrons, Bohr Diagrams, Lewis Diagrams (electron dot diagrams), ions, isotopes, and more!
Some of the topics we explored included:
- Building the Periodic Table
- Bohr Diagrams & Understanding Valence Electrons
- Periods, Groups & Families
- hydrogen & the alkali metals, alkaline Earth metals, halogens, noble gases
- Atomic Number, Atomic Mass & Chemical Symbols
- Lewis Diagrams
- Metals, Metalloids and Nonmetals
- Unusual Element Symbols
- Trends of the Periodic Table
- Electron Configuration
We did this unit together when the kids were 10, 12 and 14. I think this unit is best for middle school and up (perhaps as a supplement to for high schoolers being introduced to chemistry for the first time).
Disclosure: Please note that some of the links in this post are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase.