For our first day of Lesson 15, we continued our exploration of how the nucleus of an atom can change. The lesson addressed the question: What are nuclear reactions? We began with an illustration depicting the key vocabulary from the Lesson 15 PowerPoint in order to better understand the Nuclear Quest board game which is the hands-on learning for the day.
For the game, students gathered into teams of four, with each team receiving the board, the three sheets of nuclear quest cards, the two sheets of radiation cards and the game instructions. Also, the game requires dice which are in limited supply, so visit Random.org and use the virtual dice roller!
For our second day of Lesson 15, we began with an entry task instructing students to look up in their textbook 10 important vocabulary terms to write down in their lab notebooks.
Next, we briefly reviewed the net effects of alpha and beta decay on the parts of an atom:
Finally, students replayed the Nuclear Quest game from yesterday, this time focusing on understanding the types of reactions and their effects on atoms. Students also received the Lesson 15 worksheet to help guide them through the key learnings in the game. After completing the game, students received a copy of the Nuclear Decay Gizmo which they should plan to complete by the end of class tomorrow.
Extend Your Learning!
- Keep learning through Khan Academy! There are a number of excellent lessons focusing on the life and death of stars (nuclear fusion reactions) as well as radioactive decay (nuclear fission reactions).
- Read about fusion happening in the Sun: Neutrinos prove the Sun is doing a second kind of fusion in its core
- Prefer learning through Crash Course? Watch the Nuclear Chemistry videos below:
- For more information on radioactive decay, visit the Science Education Resource Center’s Radioactive Decay web page at Carlton College.
- Investigate human efforts to harness and use nuclear reactions – we must understand history to avoid repeating it!
- The question of whether hydrogen is a metal or a nonmetal has come up in some classes in recent days. Settle the debate for yourself by reading the articles below: