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Chapter 5 Explore

Pre-Lab - Sorting Compounds

You have seen some surprises. Pure water does not conduct electricity! Remember that both
sugar and salt dissolved in water. But salt water conducts electricity while sugar water did not.
That may have been surprising, too! What makes one white, crystalline solid conduct in water
and the other not conduct? Do they belong together as a group, “white, crystalline solid” or
should we put sugar into one group of compounds and salt into another?

Caption: How would

you sort sugar and
salt? What test
would you use? A
common decision-
making tool in
In this Explore lesson, Sorting Compounds, you will is a flow compounds. You’ll use a
test several
flowchart to help you make decisions. Your goal chart. It helps
is to sort youryou
compounds into categories.
use tests to come table.
Then you will make sense of these categories, using the periodic up
Materials: with categories of
● Conductivity meter compounds.
● Substances in closed, labeled
● 1 well plate containers:
● 1 plastic pipette o salt, NaCl
● 1 spatula o sand, SiO2
● 1 wash bottle with distilled water o graphite, C
● paper towels o calcium chloride, CaCl2
● 9 toothpicks o copper, Cu
● periodic table o aluminum foil, Al
o sucrose, C12H22O1
Process and Procedure
You will work in teams and individually. Always contribute your best thinking to teamwork.
Place all your work for this lab under the title “Chapter 5 Explore: Sorting Compounds” in your
lab notebook. (Don’t forget the table of contents!)
Once you have read through the procedures for this experience, determine the safety hazards,
precautions, and procedures you will use to minimize the risk for harm in this activity, based on
your four safety questions. Remember, your well-being is important.
Follow safety Steps a - c to help you conduct this investigation safely.
a. Read the procedural Steps 1 through 8 in the Part A below. Think about safety
issues as you read.
b. Determine the safety hazards and precautions with these steps.
Note: You want to minimize the risk for harm in this activity.
c. Complete the following table in your lab notebook.

Potential Hazard Precaution to Take Emergency Safety Measure

1. 1. 1.
2. 2. 2.
3. 3. 3.

Part A: Testing solubility and conductivity

Background knowledge
Atoms are held together by chemical bonds. Chemical bonds are forces of attraction. You
tell something about chemical bonds from the properties of substances. Four example
properties are: solubility, conductivity, hardness, and melting point (MP). You can find
substances with similar properties and place them into groups or categories. Once you do
you can begin looking for patterns. Thinking about these patterns will help you learn about the
types of chemical bonds.

You will test the solubility and the conductivity of seven different materials and create a
flowchart which will help you to categorize the different substances.

1. Make observations of each of the materials in your lab notebook. Create a table to keep your
observations organized. Miss S will show you an example table on the board.
2. Place a small amount of the first material into your well plate. Using your washbottle, carefully
squirt a small amount of water into the well plate. Use a toothpick to mix the water and solution
and observe if the solution dissolves. **Use a different toothpick for each substance! (in your
table, make your observations about how the substance dissolved: ie fully dissolved, partially
dissolved, did not dissolve).
3. Rinse and dry your well plate to use later.
4. Separate the dissolved and undissolved substances into two categories.
5. For the substances that dissolved, you will place a small amount of the substance into a
small beaker and add ~15 ml of water. Use the same toothpick you used during the well plate
portion to mix the substance until it fully dissolves.
6. You will test the conductivity of each of these substances using the conductivity set up Miss S
gives you. Be sure to record your observations in your notebook as you go. Separate these
materials into “Conducts” or “Does not Conduct” in your flowchart under the “Dissolved” section.
7. For the substances that did not dissolve you will use the conductivity set up that Miss S
gives you to test the conductivity of the dry substances. For substances that are powder or fine-
grain, place a small amount of the substance into the well plate and put the electrodes into the
substance (make sure the electrodes don’t touch each other!) For substances that are larger
solids, place an electrode at opposite ends to test the conductivity. Be sure to record your
observations in your notebook as you go. Separate these materials into “Conducts” or “Does not
Conduct” in your flowchart under the “Did Not Dissolve” section.
8. Clean up your lab station. Rinse all large solids, dry them, and return them to the lab tray.
Dispose of dissolved solutions in your sink, wash, rinse, and dry your glassware and return it to
your tray. Dispose of undissolved solids into the correct waste container at the Waste Disposal
Station. **Please do not mix these materials or dump them down the drain!!