8-10 yrs old
11-13 yrs old
14-18 yrs old
Students will use the Material Reducer to better understand that natural and synthetic objects are all made of elements.
March 9, 2020
Material Chemistry Blog
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All natural and synthetic materials are composed of chemicals, be they elements, molecules or compounds.
Many materials have similar elemental compositions but different properties. For example most stone-like materials are composed of silicon and oxygen. Whilst living things are largely carbon, oxygen, nitrogen and hydrogen.
The material reducer is similar to real word instruments used to measure the elemental composition of materials.
Students collect materials (blocks) from the world around them and analyse them, to find their elemental composition, using the material reducer.
Students can categorize the materials (blocks) based on their elemental composition and then discuss what types of materials have similar compositions and why. For example students may wish to discuss why coal, which looks like a stone has the same composition as wood.
Students can try and construct new compounds and materials made from the sourced from the 'natural' materials.
What materials have similar elemental compositions and why?
What can be constructed from natural materials and what can they be used for?
What materials are common in nature?
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