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fractional abundance

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**1. **Fractional Abundance Step by Step
Hands-ON
Parts-Whole Calculations
To Determine Atomic Mass

**2. **Part One: Introduce the Concept The Introduction
I have three sections of College Prep Chemistry and this was my third time going through Fractional Abundance.
Responses from each of my other sections shaped the manner in which I approached this subject again.
I developed a power point presentation to familiarize the students with the terms we will use in lab and to break the exercise down step by step.
I had a room full of blank stares.

**3. **The Lab:Collecting Data Labs are designed to give science students hands-on experiences.
Not all chemistry labs involve chemicals.
In this lab we needed to determine the number of “Isotopes” there were of our make-believe element Pennium so we could determine the most accurate Atomic mass of our element.
Scientists make measurements and calculations in a similar manner. The difference – they have better tools.

**4. **Crunching numbers: Step by Step Fractional Abundance Requires four intermediate steps and calculations to determine our answer
Breaking up into small groups and treating this as a lab allows students to help each other.
It allows me to circulate among the groups coaching the students.
Working in a lab setting usually gets more students involved in doing the work. They can’t hide!!!
Students are more likely to ask questions in this setting rather than in a lecture because it feels less formal.

**5. **Results Productive, well-spent class time
Collaborative work between students; while I act as a coach rather than lecturer
Students were engaged as they mastered a challenging concept.

**6. **Conclusion Labs provide a simulation of authentic experiences for science students.
Labs allow students to work collaboratively utilizing the strengths of each individual to enhance group learning.
Labs make the often dry calculations come to life and become more meaningful.
Students feel a greater sense of accomplishment for having successfully mastered a difficult concept.
Formal assessments since the lab show a marked increase in understanding as a result of hands-on practice.