Year 11 have been carrying out a number of complex science experiments to help us to observe various chemical reactions. We started off our work by asking what do we mean by a reaction? After some considerable class discussion, we came to the shared conclusion that a reaction takes place when two things meet.
Four different experiments were set up, each involving various chemicals being placed together to form a reaction.
Year 11 were interested in observing:
Vinegar and sodium bicarbonate,
Hydrochloric acid and Universal Indicator,
Plaster of Paris and water and
Magnesium ribbon and hydrochloric acid.
We spoke about what we should be looking out for as a sign to see that a chemical reaction has taken place. This included observing a physical change, hearing a reaction, smelling a reaction or even feeling a reaction in terms of the temperature.
Safety was incredibly important here. Al students wore the protective lab goggles, as well as agreeing to report any spillage of the chemicals. Working in small group, all four experiments were completed. The results were recorded on our science worksheets.
We found that the vinegar and sodium bicarbonate started to fizz. This is a sign that a gas has been produced. The hydrochloric acid and universal indicator experienced a significant colour change. The dark, dirty green of the indicator became a light, bright pink colour. The plaster of paris became a thick substance when mixed with the water. Finally the magnesium ribbon started to disintegrate when mixed with hydrochloric acid.
Year 11 re-capped what had been learnt at the end of the science session. We shared our scientific observations, concluding that a chemical reaction can take the form of a gas being produced, a smell, a change of colour, a temperature difference or even a physical change of state.
You can find out a little more about our experiments in the video above.