Quick summary: Students use an online periodic table to investigate and compare the atomic structure of metals, some of their properties, how they are used and their abundance as a resource. Students organise their information using the lotus diagram thinking tool. Then students create an ‘adopt an element’ poster that demonstrates the properties and uses of aluminium.
This lesson has been developed as part of the Schools Recycle Right Challenge for Planet Ark’s National Recycling Week. Register your lesson or other activities so they can be counted towards the national achievement and to receive other free support materials.
Learning goals for this activity include:
- Students apply the periodic table to learning about metals showing that elements that are grouped together have similar properties.
- They look for patterns about the relative abundance of metals and their application as a resource.
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Year 10 Science:
- The atomic structure and properties of elements are used to organise them in the Periodic Table (ACSSU186)
- Scientific understanding, including models and theories, are contestable and are refined over time through a process of review by the scientific community (ACSHE191)
- Use knowledge of scientific concepts to draw conclusions that are consistent with evidence (ACSIS204)
Time needed: 50 min
Resources needed: Access to the internet.
Digital technology opportunities: Use of interactive periodic table such as https://www.periodicvideos.com/
There’s an app for that: There are apps for the periodic table for both android and Apple. A good free app is ‘Periodic Table of the Elements’
Assumed prior learning: The names of common metals such as iron, aluminium, gold, silver. Some of the basic properties of metals. The concept of an element. Atoms have shells of electrons and the outer shell has a significant influence on the atoms’ properties.
Key words: Element, metal, periodic table, electron configuration, isotope, atomic number.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.
These Planet Ark resources were developed by Cool Australia with funding from the Alcoa Foundation.