Defining the system under study—specifying its boundaries and making explicit a model of that system—provides tools for understanding and testing ideas that are applicable throughout science and engineering.
Observed patterns of forms and events guide organization and classification, and they prompt questions about relationships and the factors that influence them.
Science & Engineering Practices
Generating a Hypothesis and Developing a Model
Modeling can begin in the earliest grades, with students’ models progressing from concrete “pictures” and/or physical scale models (e.g., a toy car) to more abstract representations of relevant relationships in later grades, such as a diagram representing forces on a particular object in a system. (NRC Framework, 2012, p. 58)
Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking
Although there are differences in how mathematics and computational thinking are applied in science and in engineering, mathematics often brings these two fields together by enabling engineers to apply the mathematical form of scientific theories and by enabling scientists to use powerful information technologies designed by engineers. Both kinds of professionals can thereby accomplish investigations and analyses and build complex models, which might otherwise be out of the question. (NRC Framework, 2012, p. 65)
anion - a negatively charged ion.
atomic number - the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom.
atomic radius - the distance from the atom's nucleus to the outermost energy level.
average atomic mass - a weighted average of all of the isotopes of that element in the universe.
cation - a positively charged ion.
effective nuclear charge (Zsubeff) - the net positive charge experienced by the valence electrons from the nucleus.
electron - a tiny particle with a negative charge that is found outside the nucleus of an atom.
electron configuration - the order in which electrons are arranged in an atom.
electronegativity - the ability of an atom to attract additional electrons.
energy sublevel - a smaller part within a primary energy level.
excited state - an atom, ion or molecule with an electron in a higher than normal energy level than its ground state.
ground state - the lowest energy state within electron orbitals.
Hund's Rule - When placing electrons in equal energy orbitals, electrons should not be paired until each equal energy orbital contains one electron.
ion - an atom with a positive or negative charge.
ionization energy - the amount of energy required to remove one valence electron from an atom.
isotope - the same element with different numbers of neutrons.
model - a physical, conceptual, or mathematical representation of a real phenomenon whose purpose is to explain and predict the observed phenomenon.
orbital - a region of space around the nucleus of an atom where an electron is likely to be found.
Pauli exclusion principle - when an orbital holds two electrons, the electrons much have opposite spin.
quantum - a specific amount of energy that can be absorbed by an electron as it moves from ground state to excited state, or released by an electron as it falls from the excited state back to ground state.
subatomic- any smaller part of an atom such as a proton, neutron, or electron.
valence electrons - electrons on the outer-most energy level of any atom.
valence shell - the outer-most energy level of an electron.
Georgia Standards of Excellence
SC1Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about the use of the modern atomic theory and periodic law to explain the characteristics of atoms and elements.
SC1.gDevelop and use models including electron configuration of atoms and ions to predict an element’s chemical properties.
Request Teacher Toolkit
The Chemistry Matters teacher toolkit provides instructions and answer keys for labs, experiments, and assignments for all 12 units of study. GPB offers the teacher toolkit at no cost to Georgia educators. Complete and submit this form to request the teacher toolkit. You only need to submit this form one time to get materials for all 12 units of study.