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Lewis Symbols. To help us to focus on the valence electrons – those that can participate in bonding - we use Lewis Symbols (in honor of scientist G.N. Lewis). Lewis Dot Symbols. Lewis Dot symbol (or Electron dot symbol) Dots placed around an element ’ s symbol represent valence electrons

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Lewis symbols
Lewis Symbols

  • To help us to focus on the valence electrons – those that can participate in bonding - we use Lewis Symbols (in honor of scientist G.N. Lewis)

Lewis dot symbols
Lewis Dot Symbols

  • Lewis Dot symbol (or Electron dot symbol)

    • Dots placed around an element’s symbol represent valence electrons

    • Pair electrons as needed

    • Ions are placed in brackets with charge outside

    • Easily shows “Octet rule”

      • Tendency of an atom to achieve an electron configuration having 8 valence electrons

        • Same as the electron configuration of a noble gas

        • The 8 electrons shown as 4 pairs

Group practice
Group Practice:

  • Write out dot diagrams showing the valence electrons of the following atoms. Use principles of electron configuration to predict and explain the ionic compoundseach pair will react to form:

    • Magnesium fluoride

    • Aluminum oxide

    • Nickel(II) chloride

Molecular compounds
Molecular Compounds

  • Write the orbital diagram for a hydrogen atom.

  • We have seen evidence from gaseous reactions that elemental hydrogen exists as a diatomic molecule. Use your orbital diagram to explain why hydrogen atoms would be more stable (lower chemical energy) as H2 molecules.

Electron dot diagrams for the diatomic elements
Electron Dot Diagrams for theDiatomic Elements

  • How does hydrogen obtain a noble-gas electron configuration?

Covalent compounds and bonding
Covalent Compounds and Bonding

  • When two nonmetals form a compound, the bond between atoms is covalent.

  • Both atoms are close to the noble-gas electron configuration, so sharing electrons will allow both to obtain it.

  • In a covalent bond, each shared electron is attracted simultaneously to two nuclei.

Covalent bonds
Covalent Bonds

  • Electrons not transferred in this case

  • Electrons typically shared in pairs

Carbon dioxide example
Carbon Dioxide Example

  • The atoms of CO2 molecules are held together by strong covalent bonds.

  • No bonds connect the molecules, so CO2 molecules separate easily from each other into the gas state at room temperature.

Figure 8.13

Figure from p. 28

Whiteboard practice
Whiteboard Practice

  • Use valence electron concepts and electron dot diagrams to represent these compounds:

    • HF

    • CF4

    • O2

    • CO2

The octet rule
The Octet Rule

  • Just as in ionic bonding, covalent bonds are formed so that each atom can have the noble-gas electron configuration. Noble gases have 8 valence electrons, an octet.

The halogens
The Halogens

  • Do the atoms in each of these molecules have an octet?

  • Why do the halogens exist as diatomic molecules?

Multiple bonds
Multiple Bonds

  • How many valence electrons does an oxygen atom have?

    • How many does it need to obtain an octet?

    • O2 has a double bond, two pairs of shared electrons

  • How many valence electrons does a nitrogen atom have?

    • How many does it need to obtain an octet?

    • N2 has a triple bond, three pairs of shared electrons

The octet
The Octet

  • An unreactive or stable compound usually has the maximum number of valence electrons per core (8)

    • Same as the electron configuration of a noble gas

    • Covalently bonded atoms achieve 8 valence electrons by sharing electrons

    • The 8 electrons exist in 4 pairs

  • H atoms bond with other atoms to obtain a total of 2 electrons like He (duet).

Practice valence electrons and number of bonds
Practice: Valence Electrons and Number of Bonds

  • How many bonds do each of the following atoms tend to form?

    • H

    • Cl

    • O

    • N

    • C

Carbon compounds
Carbon Compounds

Figure 8.21

  • Carbon has:

    • Four valence electrons

    • The ability to form four bonds

    • The ability to bond to itself

    • Very strong bonds when bonded to itself

  • Carbon molecules are ubiquitous in nature.

  • Aside from what I’ve mentioned here, skip “Bonding in Carbon Compounds”, pp. 307-310 (top).


  • Aromatic hydrocarbons

    • A class of hydrocarbons which has carbon atoms arranged in a six-atom ring with alternating single and double bonds

    • Delocalized structures

Figure 8.22

Figure 8.22

Ionic and covalent
Ionic and Covalent

  • In ionic compounds, ions are held together by electrostatic forces – forces between oppositely charged ions.

  • In molecular compounds, atoms are held together by covalent bonds in which electrons are shared.

Figure 8.2

Activity identifying types of bonding
Activity: Identifying Types of Bonding

  • Identify the type of bonding in each of the following substances:

    • NaF

    • ClO2

    • FeSO4

    • SO2

    • Ca(ClO2)2

Steps for writing lewis structures
Steps for Writing Lewis Structures

  • Write an atomic skeleton.

  • Sum the valence electrons from each atom to get the total number of valence electrons.

  • Place two electrons, a single bond, between each pair of bonded atoms (can also be drawn as a line)

  • Place remaining valence electrons to complete the octet of each outer atom. These are called non-bonding electrons or lone pairs. If there are “extra” electrons, place the pairs around the central atom.

  • If necessary to satisfy the octet rule, shift unshared electrons from non-bonded positions on atoms with completed octets to positions between atoms to make double or triple bonds.

Activity lewis structures
Activity: Lewis Structures

  • Draw Lewis structures to show how electrons are shared in these molecules.

    • C2H6

    • C2H4

    • C2H2

    • HCN

    • CO2

    • NH3