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Periodic Table Trends Lab

Introduction:
Do atoms get smaller or larger from right to left across a row? Do atoms get denser or less dense
from right to left across a row? All these questions and more will be answered as we start to see
the different trends that take shape on the Periodic Table. Through this lab, you will be able to
see the following trends: atomic mass, atomic radius, electronegativity, density, and melting
point.

Pre-Lab Questions:
1. Do you think that as we move right to left across a row, the atomic mass will increase or
decrease? Explain your reasoning.

2. Do you think that as we move right to left across a row, the atomic radius will increase or
decrease? Explain your reasoning.

3. Do you think that as we move right to left across a row, the electronegativity will
increase or decrease? Explain your reasoning.

4. Do you think that as we move right to left across a row, the density will increase or
decrease? Explain your reasoning.

5. Do you think that as we move right to left across a row, the melting point will increase or
decrease? Explain your reasoning.
Procedure:
For this lab your group will need the following:
-40 Straws Per Group -Calculator -1 Reaction Plate -Periodic Table
-A Piece of Clay -Ruler

1. Gather the materials and get with your lab group

2. Find your assigned property on the Periodic Table. Circle your property!
(atomic mass, atomic radius, electronegativity, density, and melting point)

3. Find the maximum value of your property for elements 1-20, 31-38, and 49-54. WE
AREN’T USING THE TRANSITION METALS.
Ex. The maximum value of the density for these elements is 7.31 g/cm3 (for tin).

4. Let the length of the straw minus one cm represent this maximum value. This length will
be the scale for all of the other values of the elements. Round off straw lengths to 0.1 cm
(1 mm).
Ex: For a straw length that is 19.5 cm long, a straw length of 18.5 cm will
represent a density of 7.31 g/cm3. The scale is thus 18.5 cm = 7.31 g/cm3.

5. Using this “straw” scale as a ratio, calculate the straw length that is needed to represent
the assigned property for each element in the list.
Ex: The density of beryllium is 1.85 g/cm3. Solving Equation 1 for the straw
length (SL) shows that a straw length of 4.7 cm is needed to represent the density of
beryllium. Round off all straw lengths to 0.1 cm.
𝑆𝐿 max 𝑠𝑡𝑟𝑎𝑤 𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑔𝑡ℎ
Equation 1: =
𝑣𝑎𝑙𝑢𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑒𝑙𝑒𝑚𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑝𝑟𝑜𝑝𝑒𝑟𝑡𝑦 max 𝑣𝑎𝑙𝑢𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑦𝑜𝑢𝑟 𝑝𝑟𝑜𝑝𝑒𝑟𝑡𝑦

𝑆𝐿 18.5
Ex Equation 1: = SL = 4.7 cm
1.85 7.31
6. Add 1.0 cm to the calculated straw length for each element and cut a straw to that length.
Ex: Cut a straw 5.7 cm (4.7 cm + 1.0 cm) long to represent beryllium.

7. Place the straw in the reaction plate according to the position of the element in the
periodic table and put a small piece of clay in the bottom of the plate to help the straw
stand up. Remember, the transition elements are not included in the list of
representative elements.
Ex: Beryllium (period 2, Group IIA) is placed in row 2, column 2.

8. Repeat step 5-7 until you all completed elements 1-20, 31-38, and 49-54.
Post-Lab Questions:
1. Walk around the room and look at all of the following trends done by the different groups
and describe any trend that you see and explain your reasoning.
a. Atomic Mass

b. Atomic Radius

c. Electronegativity

d. Density

e. Melting Point

2. Which element had the smallest atomic mass?

3. Which element had the largest atomic radius?

4. Which element had the most electronegativity?

5. Which element had the greatest density?

6. Which element had the lowest melting point?

7. Based on the property you had, calculate the straw length for the following elements:
Circle your property!
(atomic mass, atomic radius, electronegativity, density, and melting point)
a. Barium (Ba)

b. Lead (Pb)

c. Radon (Rn)