Focus: In this unit, students investigate the phenomenon of matter and its involvement in chemical reactions. The subtitle of this unit is How can we make something new that was not there before? This is a phenomenon that students experience when they add a bath bomb to water and see that a gas is released. What causes this to happen? How does matter undergo chemical reactions? This unit allows students to observe this phenomenon in detail and then start asking questions, formulating explanations, setting up and conducting activities and research, and working with classmates to analyze the shared experience and formulate new questions and developing new strategies for answering them. Students explore concepts that include the following:
- What’s in a bath bomb that is producing the gas?
- How can we explain another phenomenon where gas bubbles appear from combining different substances together?
- How can particles of a new substance be formed out of the particles of an old substance?
- How do Dalton’s models of the particles that change in a reaction compared to the ones we developed?
As students move through their day-to-day activities, they will also read Core Knowledge literacy selections. These include factual articles, history of the sciences, art and literature, spotting bad science in the media and advertisements, graphics comprehension, research-type articles, reliability of sources, and other areas of science literacy.
- Teacher Guide: 14 Lessons
- Student Reader: 5 Collections
- Lessons can be completed in one or more class periods.
- A Pacing Guide, found in Online Resources, offers the suggestion that the entire unit should take about 25 days if class is held each day.
- A complete list of materials needed to complete the unit is also provided in the Online Resources.
- The Core Knowledge Student Reader includes on reading collection per week for every week of the unit. A week’s reading collection relates to the lessons completed in the previous week.
- The reading is assigned at the beginning of the week with the accompanying writing exercise due at the end of the week.
- The reading and writing exercises are designed to be completed by students independently with brief, supporting, teacher-facilitated discussions at the beginning, midpoint, and end of the week.
Additional Search Terms for the Student Reader:
• chemical • dilute • science literacy • dissolve • state of matter • substance • molecules • pressure • solubility • element • property • combustion • density • flammability • atom • compound • chemical reaction • product • reactant • chemical energy • nonfiction • informational text