Key Concepts:

A physical readjust, such as a state readjust or disaddressing, does not produce a brand-new substance, but a chemical readjust does.In a chemical reaction, the atoms and molecules that interact through each other are dubbed reactants.In a chemical reactivity, the atoms and molecules produced by the reactivity are called assets. In a chemical reactivity, only the atoms existing in the reactants have the right to finish up in the assets. No new atoms are developed, and no atoms are destroyed.In a chemical reaction, reactants call each other, bonds in between atoms in the reactants are broken, and atoms reararray and develop new bonds to make the products.

You are watching: A substance that enters into a chemical reaction


The teacher will certainly usage a small candle flame to demonstrate a chemical reaction between the candle wax and also oxygen in the air. Students will certainly check out a molecular animation of the combustion of methane and oxygen as a version of a similar reaction. Students will certainly use atom model cut-outs to version the reaction and also see that all the atoms in the reactants show up in the products.


Students will have the ability to describe that for a chemical reactivity to take location, the bonds between atoms in the reactants are broken, the atoms rearrange, and new bonds between the atoms are developed to make the products. Students will certainly additionally be able to explain that in a chemical reactivity, no atoms are produced or ruined.


Download the student task sheet, and also distribute one per student as soon as mentioned in the activity. The task sheet will certainly serve as the “Evaluate” component of each 5-E leschild arrangement.


Be certain you and the students wear properly fitting goggles. Be careful as soon as lighting the candle. Be certain that the complement and candle are completely extinguished once you are finiburned through the demonstration.

Materials for the Demonstration

Tea light candle or various other tiny steady candle MatchesGlass jar, big enough to be inserted over the candle

Materials for Each Student

Atom cut-outs from the task sheetSheet of colored paper or construction paperColored pencilsScissorsGlue or tape

Rewatch what happens during a physical readjust and also introduce the idea of chemical change.

Tell students that in previous chapters they have actually stupassed away different aspects of physical readjust. When atoms and molecules speed up or slow down, that is a physical adjust. When they change state from liquid to solid or from gregarding liquid, that is a physical change. When a substance is dissolved by water or some various other solvent, a brand-new substance has not really been formed. The ions or molecules can still come earlier together to form the original substance.

Let students understand that in this chapter they will certainly discover what happens in the time of a chemical change. In a chemical readjust, the atoms in the reactants reararray themselves and also bond together in different ways to create one or more new assets through various features than the reactants. When a brand-new substance is created, the adjust is dubbed a chemical adjust.

As a demonstration, light a candle and also define what is happening making use of the terms reactants, products, and also chemical reaction.

Exsimple that in most chemical reactions, 2 or even more substances, called reactants, communicate to produce various substances referred to as commodities. Tell students that burning a candle is an example of a chemical reactivity.

Materials for the Demonstration

Tea light candle or other little steady candle MatchesGlass jar, huge sufficient to be put over the candle


Carecompletely light a tea light candle or various other tiny candle.Keep the candle burning as you ask students the questions below. You will certainly put the candle out in the second component of the demonstration.

Expected Results

The wick will certainly catch on fire and also the flame will be sustained by the chemical reactivity.

The adhering to question is not simple and students are not meant to know the answer at this suggest. However before, thinking about a candle burning in terms of a chemical reactivity is a good location to begin arising what it suggests when substances react chemically.

Ask students:

What do you think are the reactants in this chemical reaction? Wax and also oxygen from the air are the reactants.

Students regularly say that the string or wick is burning. It is true that the string of the wick does burn but it’s the wax on the string and not so a lot the string itself that burns and keeps the candle burning. Explain that the molecules that make up the wax integrate with oxygen from the air to make the assets carbon dioxide and water vapor.

Point out to students that this is one of the significant attributes of a chemical reaction: In a chemical reactivity, atoms in the reactants integrate in new and also different methods to create the molecules of the commodities.

Students may be surprised that water deserve to be developed from burning. Since we use water to extinguish a fire, it might seem starray that water is actually developed by burning. You may desire to let students know that as soon as they “burn” food in their bodies, they also produce carbon dioxide and also water.

Place a jar over the candle to assist students realize that oxygen is a reactant in the burning of a candle.

Remind students that air is a mixture of gases. Exordinary that when something burns, it reacts with the oxygen in the air.

Ask students to make a prediction:

Will the candle still burn if among the reactants (wax or oxygen) is no much longer available? Students may guess that the candle will certainly not burn bereason both reactants are forced for the chemical reaction to continue.


Carefully area a glass jar over the lit candle.


Expected Results

The flame goes out.

Ask students:

Why perform you think the flame goes out once we put a jar over the candle? Placing a jar over the candle boundaries the amount of oxygen in the air about the candle. Without sufficient oxygen to react via the wax, the chemical reactivity cannot take area and the candle cannot burn. When a candle burns for a while, it ultimately gets smaller sized and also smaller sized. Wright here does the candle wax go? When a candle burns, the candle wax seems to “disappear.” It doesn’t really disappear, though: It reacts chemically, and the new products go into the air.

Note: Some curious students may ask what the flame is made of. This is a great question and also not trivial to answer. The flame is burning wax vapor. The light of the flame is caused by a procedure called chemiluminescence. Energy released in the chemical reactivity makes electrons from different molecules move to a greater energy state. When the electrons come earlier dvery own, power is released in the create of light.


Have students make a design to present that in a chemical reaction the atoms of the reactants reararray to form the commodities.

Concern to Investigate

Wright here execute the atoms in the products of a chemical reaction come from?

Materials for Each Student

Atom model cut-outs (carbon, oxygen, and also hydrogen)Sheet of colored paper or construction paperColored pencilsScissorsGlue or tape


Prepare the AtomsColor the carbon atoms black, the oxygen atoms red, and leave the hydrogen atoms white. Use scissors to very closely cut out the atoms.Build the Reactants

On a sheet of paper, area the atoms together to make the molecules of the reactants on the left side of the chemical equation for the combustion of methane.

Write the chemical formula under each molecule of the reactants. Also attract a + sign in between the reactants.

After you are sure that students have made and also written the formula for the reactant molecules, tell students that they will certainly reararray the atoms in the reactants to create the commodities.

Build the ProductsDraw an arrowhead after the second oxygen molecule to display that a chemical reactivity is taking place.Rearvariety the atoms in the reactants to make the molecules in the assets on the best side of the arrowhead. Write the chemical formula under each molecule of the assets. Also draw a + sign between the commodities.

Tell students that in a chemical reactivity, the atoms in the reactants come apart, rearrange, and also make brand-new bonds to develop the products.

Represent the Chemical EquationHave students use their continuing to be atoms to make the reactants aobtain to reexisting the chemical reaction as a complete chemical equation. Glue or tape the atoms to the paper to make a more irreversible chemical equation of the combustion of methane.Extend

Introduce 2 other combustion reactions and also have actually students check to watch whether or not they are well balanced.

Tell students that, in addition to the wax and methane, some various other prevalent hydrocarbons are propane (the fuel in outdoor gas grills), and butane (the fuel in disposable lighters). Have students count the number of carbon, hydrogen, and also oxygen atoms in the reactants and products of each equation to check out if the equation is well balanced. They should record the number of each kind of atom in the chart on their task sheet.

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Lighting an outdoor gas grill—Combustion of propane

C3H8 + 5O2 → 3CO2 + 4H20

Using a disposable lighter—Combustion of butane

2C4H10 + 13O2 → 8CO2 + 10H2O

After students have counted up each form of atom, evaluation their answers to make certain they understand just how to interpret subscripts and also coefficients.