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Types of Reactions

This segment explores different types of reactions by performing a lab and talking with two special guests - Dr. Eileen Kennedy, who explains how scientists use chemical reactions to synthesize new medications, and Dr. Mike Petelle, who discusses acid rain.

This segment features two special guests – Dr. Mike Petelle, who discusses acid rain, and Dr. Eileen Kennedy, who explains how scientists use chemical reactions to synthesize new medications.

Premiere Date: July 11, 2016 | Runtime: 00:29:26

Support Materials


Unit 5B Note Taking Guide & Segment Questions

Crosscutting Concepts

Scale, Proportion, and Quantity

In considering phenomena, it is critical to recognize what is relevant at different measures of size, time, and energy and to recognize how changes in scale, proportion, or quantity affect a system’s structure or performance.

Cause and Effect

Mechanism and explanation. Events have causes, sometimes simple, sometimes multifaceted. A major activity of science is investigating and explaining causal relationships and the mechanisms by which they are mediated. Such mechanisms can then be tested across given contexts and used to predict and explain events in new contexts.

Science & Engineering Practices

Analyzing and Interpreting Data

Once collected, data must be presented in a form that can reveal any patterns and relationships and that allows results to be communicated to others. Because raw data as such have little meaning, a major practice of scientists is to organize and interpret data through tabulating, graphing, or statistical analysis. Such analysis can bring out the meaning of data—and their relevance—so that they may be used as evidence.
Engineers, too, make decisions based on evidence that a given design will work; they rarely rely on trial and error. Engineers often analyze a design by creating a model or prototype and collecting extensive data on how it performs, including under extreme conditions. Analysis of this kind of data not only informs design decisions and enables the prediction or assessment of performance but also helps define or clarify problems, determine economic feasibility, evaluate alternatives, and investigate failures. (NRC Framework, 2012, p. 61-62)

Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions

The goal of science is the construction of theories that provide explanatory accounts of the world. A theory becomes accepted when it has multiple lines of empirical evidence and greater explanatory power of phenomena than previous theories.”(NRC Framework, 2012, p. 52)

Engaging in Argument from Evidence

The study of science and engineering should produce a sense of the process of argument necessary for advancing and defending a new idea or an explanation of a phenomenon and the norms for conducting such arguments. In that spirit, students should argue for the explanations they construct, defend their interpretations of the associated data, and advocate for the designs they propose. (NRC Framework, 2012, p. 73)

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)


activity series - a list of metals or non-metals in order of decreased reactivity.

chemical change - any change that results in the formation of a new chemical substance.

coefficient - a number in front of a chemical substance that represents the quantity needed for a reaction.

combustion reaction - a type of chemical reaction that occurs when carbon and hydrogen compounds react with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide and water.

decomposition reaction - when one reactant breaks apart into two or more products.

double displacement reaction - a type of chemical reaction that occurs when the like ions of two ionic substances displace each other to form new substances; also known as a double replacement reaction.

law of conservation of matter - matter cannot be created or destroyed, it just changes from one form to another.

matter - anything that has mass and takes up space.

physical change - a change which alters a substance without altering its composition.

precipitate - a solid substance formed in a solution during a chemical reaction.

product - a substance formed as the result of a chemical reaction.

reactant - a substance that takes part in and undergoes change during a chemical reaction.

single displacement reaction - a type of chemical reaction that occurs by the transfer of electrons, so that a neutral substance displaces a like-charged ion in a compound so that it becomes neutral; also known as a single replacement reaction.

solubility table - a table which displays the ability of a substance to dissolve or dissociate in water or an acid.

synthesis reaction - a reaction that combines two or more reactants to form one product. 

Georgia Standards of Excellence

SC2Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about the chemical and physical properties of matter resulting from the ability of atoms to form bonds.

SC2.fDevelop and use bonding models to predict chemical formulas including ionic (binary and ternary), acidic, and inorganic covalent compounds.

SC3Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about how the Law of Conservation of Matter is used to determine chemical composition in compounds and chemical reactions.

SC3.aUse mathematics and computational thinking to balance chemical reactions (i.e. synthesis, decomposition, single replacement, double replacement, and combustion) and construct an explanation for the outcome of a simple chemical reaction based on the outermost electron states of atoms, trends in the periodic table, and knowledge of the patterns of chemical properties.

SC3.bPlan and carry out investigations to determine that a new chemical has formed by identifying indicators of a chemical reaction (specifically precipitate formation, gas evolution, color change, water production, and changes in energy to the system should be investigated).

SPS3Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to support the Law of Conservation of Matter.

SPS3.aPlan and carry out investigations to generate evidence supporting the claim that mass is conserved during a chemical reaction. (Clarification statement: Limited to synthesis, decomposition, simple replacement, and double replacement reactions.)

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.