Lesson Plan Day: 39 10/16
Teacher: P. Kirk
Topic: Isotopes, differences in mass and different numbers of neutrons,
C.PM: STRUCTURE AND PROPERTIES OF MATTER
C.PM.1: Atomic structure - Evolution of atomic models/theory
HS.PS1.C: Nuclear Processes
Nuclear processes, including fusion, fission, and radioactive decays of
unstable nuclei, involve release or absorption of energy. The total number of
neutrons plus protons does not change in any nuclear process. (HS-PS1-8)
Section 21.1: Nuclear reactions affect the nucleus of an atom.
Section 21.4: Nuclear Fission and Nuclear Fusion
Learn what is different about isotopes of the same element. Define and
calculate abundance, average atomic mass and the number of neutrons in a
isotope, abundance, relative abundance, mass number, neutron
Students will work in lab groups to complete the Isotopic Pennies Lab. The
Small-scale Lab: Atomic Mass and Coinium will push many students to the edge
and beyond their current math ability. They will be given a empty film
canister, a canister containing a set number of Pre-1982 and Post-1982
pennies, they will also be given 1 pre and 1 post penny. From this they will
determine the number of pre and post pennies in the container without opening
the container. This process simulate the determination of the abundance of two
isotopes of an element in a sample of an element.
Students will work alone or in small groups to complete the Average Atomic
Mass Packet. If students need additional work or practice they should work on
and turn in Average Atomic Mass Practice Problems (Skill Practice 9).
Students will use the PhET-Isotopes and Atomic Mass simulation to complete
the PhET handout.
Students will work on and check answers with the Atomic Structure /
Isotopes and Average Atomic Mass practice worksheet.
Teacher will need to walk students through the lab. Higher level math
students may understand the fact that two missing variable require two
equations and the substitution of one equation into the other to solve for the
Teacher will if necessary go through notes covering isotopes, and the
calculation of average atomic mass. Assist students work, possibly going
through a problem or two on the Skill Practice 9 worksheet.
Monitor student progress on the simulation. Assist where necessary. This
one will be a bit more challenging for them. Many lack the math skills to
calculate abundance and number of a specific isotope.
Mass balances, coinium containers, empty containers and pre and post 1982
pennies. Copies of The Coinium Lab, Average Atomic Mass Packets, Skill
Practice 9 worksheet, PhET-Isotopes and Atomic Mass handout, calculators,
Notes and PowerPoints on the topic,
The Coinium Lab could be checked and or graded, but student performance and
understanding of the topic will be minimal. Best bet is to check for 5point
student participation on the lab.
The packet should either be graded for completion 5 to 10points or for
correctness 15 to 20points. The Skills Practice 9 worksheet could be
collected for 10points or taken as 5 extra credit points from those that do
The PhET packet can be checked, answers can be given or it can be collected
for a grade of maybe 10points.