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❶Sodium is represented by its symbol Na, and because it has one valence electron, that 3 s electron, that electron is represented by a dot next to the symbol. Elements in the first row hydrogen and helium will have outer electrons in the first energy level.

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The Easy Way to Teach About Valence Electrons: Activities for Kinesthetic Learners

Then have them repeat the process with an element that contains more electrons, such as iron. So much can be done with the periodic table - if only you could get your students to pay attention to it.

Just draw a life-sized Periodic Table with sidewalk chalk on a large paved area. Let each student choose a square of the Periodic table to stand on filling in the ones with fewer electrons first, if possible. Then ask them questions about the number of electrons they have, and let the appropriate students call out their answers. For example, you might say "Who has exactly one electron in their outermost shell? Like other chemistry activities , these valence electron activities are the perfect way to make an abstract concept more engaging, especially for kinesthetic learners.

In fact, you may find that your most enthusiastic participants are those that have no patience for typical electron diagrams. Button Map Instead of merely drawing an electron dot diagram, let students use buttons to represent them. Electron Musical Chairs This easy way to teach about valence electrons is as hands-on as it gets! Periodic Table Shout Out So much can be done with the periodic table - if only you could get your students to pay attention to it. Chemistry Lessons and Activities Are you teaching a class about valence electrons?

These chemistry lessons and activities will liven up your chemistry classroom. Moving to the 13th column, which starts with boron, you will notice that there are three outer electrons: All atoms in this family will have three valence electrons. Are you starting to see a pattern forming? The elements in the carbon family all will have four valence electrons, the elements in the nitrogen family will have five, the elements in the oxygen family will have six, the halogens will have seven valence electrons and aside from helium, the elements in the last column - the noble gases - will all have eight valence electrons two s electrons and six p electrons.

Get access risk-free for 30 days, just create an account. As you can see, the number of valence electrons an atom has is related to the column it is found in on the periodic table. When an atom has eight valence electrons it is said to have an octet of electrons. Atoms with a complete octet have s and p orbitals that are completely filled with electrons, so they are extremely stable.

Notice that the Lewis dot diagrams fill the outer shells by first putting in four electrons alone on either side and then starting to pair them up with the addition of the fifth electron.

This representation will help us later on when we discuss chemical bonding. Aside from the number of valence electrons an atom has, the energy they have or the energy level that they are in is the last bit of information that helps predict how an atom will react. They all have one valence electron, but their valence electrons are located farther and farther away from the nucleus as you move down on the periodic table.

For example, that one valence electron in lithium is in the 2 s orbital. That number 2 is the principal quantum number that represents the size of the orbital. The 2 s orbital is going to be a lot smaller than the 4 s orbital in potassium that holds its valence electron.

What that means is the valence electron in potassium is going to have more energy and be farther away from the nucleus than the valence electron in lithium. What difference does that make? Well, as you may have noticed from the sodium example, those elements in the first column are going to get rid of their outer electrons as quickly as possible. Having that one outer electron flying around alone out there makes that atom very chemically unstable.

The ability of it to chemically react is directly dependent upon how easily it can get rid of that outer electron. Potassium is way more likely to get rid of its outer electron than lithium is because its outer electron is in the 4 s orbital, which is much farther away from the inner pull of the positively charged nucleus. Lithium will hang on to its 2 s electron more tightly than potassium will hang on to its 4 s electron because the 2 s electron is closer to the inward pull of the positively charged nucleus.

This makes potassium much more reactive than lithium. If you put a tiny chunk of lithium in water it may just fizz, but if you put the same amount of potassium in water it will probably pop or explode. As you may have noticed, the row an element is in will represent the energy level the valence electrons will have. Elements in the first row hydrogen and helium will have outer electrons in the first energy level.

Their principal quantum number is 1. Elements in the second row lithium through neon will have valence electrons in the second energy level with a principal quantum number of 2.

The trend continues all the way down to the seventh row. Remember, those last two rows really belong squeezed into the sixth and seventh rows. The most important feature of an atom that helps predict its chemical properties is the location and quantity of its electrons - more specifically, its valence electrons or outer electrons. The outer electrons are the ones that participate in the chemical reactions, changing the properties of an atom or molecule. The column an element is in on the periodic table will indicate how many valence electrons it has, and for now, when we count across columns, we will skip over the d -block.

The row an element is in will indicate the energy level of the outer electrons. Finally, because valence electrons are so important, they can be represented symbolically in Lewis dot diagrams. To unlock this lesson you must be a Study. Did you know… We have over college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1, colleges and universities.

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Explore over 4, video courses. Find a degree that fits your goals. This lesson will explain how to use it to quickly determine the most useful information about the most important electrons.

We will be focusing our discussion on valence electrons and energy levels. Try it risk-free for 30 days. An error occurred trying to load this video. Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

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Atomic and Ionic Radii: Are you still watching? Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds. Add to Add to Add to. Want to watch this again later? Electron Configurations in Atomic Energy Levels.

Isotopes and Average Atomic Mass. Predicting Formation, Charge, and Formulas of Ions. The Bohr Model and Atomic Spectra. Properties of Groups and Periods. Using the Mole to Count Atoms. Holt McDougal Modern Chemistry: Significant Chemists Study Guide. Kristin Born Kristin has an M. The periodic table contains a wealth of information. Valence Electrons and Energy Levels Valence electrons can greatly impact the properties of atoms of the same element The electron is one of the most important factors in determining how an atom will react with another atom or molecule.

Valence Electrons This was just a brief introduction into how the electronic structure will affect the function and reactivity and even taste of an atom. Try it risk-free No obligation, cancel anytime. Want to learn more?

Select a subject to preview related courses: Energy of Valence Electrons Aside from the number of valence electrons an atom has, the energy they have or the energy level that they are in is the last bit of information that helps predict how an atom will react. The farther away the valence electrons are from the nucleus, the more energy an atom has As you may have noticed, the row an element is in will represent the energy level the valence electrons will have.

Lesson Summary The most important feature of an atom that helps predict its chemical properties is the location and quantity of its electrons - more specifically, its valence electrons or outer electrons. Lesson Objectives After watching this lesson, you should be able to: Define valence electrons and identify how many an element has Understand the importance of how many valence electrons an element has Explain how to represent the number of valence electrons in a Lewis dot diagram Describe the significance of the orbital location of valence electrons in an element.

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Education and Career Roadmap. You are viewing lesson Lesson 2 in chapter 3 of the course:. General Chemistry 14 chapters lessons 11 flashcard sets.

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