Activity: (U1 M1) Building Atoms and Molecules
Building atoms and molecules can be challenging concepts to grasp in an introductory course such as this. Your greatest assets in gaining a solid understanding of how to build molecules are repetition and using a variety of formats and tools to gain practice. This Activity will give you the opportunity to do both. Not only will you bring pencil to paper to do this, but you will also use some online simulations to perfect your understanding of atomic structure and bonding principles using very visual processes. This Activity will give you practice on the basic concepts and prepare you for the Labs in this Module.
The review worksheet: “Building Atoms and Molecules” (Google Doc) has 5 components:
Basic review questions
Hand drawing atoms and elements
“Build an Atom” (Webpage) interactive simulation
Hand drawing molecules and compounds
“ ” (Webpage) interactive simulation
Each step in this Activity builds upon the previous step; therefore, it is important to complete them in order. It is recommended that you print out this worksheet and answer the analysis questions by hand. This worksheet is not to be turned in or graded. You will have a chance to look at a variety of atoms and molecules in virtual simulations. This will help you conceptualize the 3-D nature of molecules whereas hand drawing allows you to better understand how subatomic particles interact and relate to each other. This worksheet will give you a permanent version that you can come back to for review and assessment preparation. Therefore, it is important to do both the written portions and virtual portions to utilize this Activity to its fullest.
Keep in mind that you will not be required to memorize atomic numbers or masses of any elements, but you must be able to extrapolate that information when given the number of protons, electrons, and neutrons, or vice versa. Given the atomic number and mass, you are required to identify the numbers of each type of subatomic particle found in the element.