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360Science™: Rate of Decomposition of Metal Carbonates

By: The Flinn Scientific Staff

360Science™ blends the best of student-engaging digital content with easily adaptable hands-on labs to offer your students a uniquely comprehensive learning experience.

In this lab experience, students explore the kinetics of thermal decomposition of various metal carbonates at high temperatures. First, students will qualitatively compare the rate of thermal decomposition of several metal carbonates. Second, they will measure the initial rate of thermal decomposition of one of the metal carbonates by performing graphical analysis of the collected data. Copper(II) carbonate or zinc carbonate generate carbon dioxide gas as a decomposition product, hence special equipment is provided to collect and measure the volume of gas generated. Editable, differentiated instructions range from a time-sensitive prescriptive lab to full open inquiry, and robust online videos and content—including a virtual reality (VR) simulation—help students prepare for and better understand the labs they’re conducting.

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Product Details

360Science™: Rate of Decomposition of Metal Carbonates
 Metal carbonates, kinetics of decomposition, rate of reaction
Outcomes: Students will observe that sodium carbonate and potassium carbonate do not decompose under the conditions of temperature applied in this experiment. In contrast, calcium carbonate and copper carbonate will undergo appreciable thermal decomposition and will emit carbon dioxide as a result. The released carbon dioxide will cause the limewater solution to turn cloudy due to formation of calcium carbonate upon reaction with calcium hydroxide in solution. In Part II of the guided, open, or advanced versions, students will measure the amount of carbon dioxide released when a sample of one of the metal carbonates is exposed to high temperatures as a function of time. Graphical analysis of the results will show that carbon dioxide production levels off over time, and the initial rate of thermal decomposition of the metal carbonate will be estimated from the linear portion of the graph.
Associated Phenomena: Fast and Slow Processes 

Our 1-year option provides access to all digital content for one year plus lab supplies for a single class of 30 students. Our 3-year option extends access to digital content to three years, with a 30% discount on refill supply kits years 2 and 3.

What is Flinn 360Science™?
We’re introducing a whole new way to teach experiential science! We’ve taken a hard look at science study from all perspectives and, thanks to the feedback of thousands of teachers nationwide, we’ve created a way to make it easier to provide personalized instruction while delivering the kind of lab experiences your students truly need.

Our new and comprehensive learning solutions are designed to bring science to life by giving you all the tools you need to incorporate more (and effective) hands-on learning in your classroom or lab. 360Science allows you to provide your students with the support they need to make real-world connections to key scientific principles and help make those abstract concepts concrete.

Every 360Science lab solves the most common challenges educators face in bringing more hands-on science to their students—from not having enough time to matching the right level of challenge for students’ abilities to providing appropriate background content, safety techniques, assessments and more.

Enable student-driven, blended learning through a unique combination of leveled lab instructions supporting prescriptive, guided- and open-inquiry lab exercises (see PDF resource for specific details) with robust digital content, such as videos and carefully curated Open Educational Resources (OER)—along with virtual reality and simulation exercises. From editable, digital instructions to assessments and alignment with Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), we have everything you need to improve mastery, remove the intimidation factor and foster your students’ natural curiosity.

Correlation to Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)

Science & Engineering Practices

Constructing explanations and designing solutions
Using mathematics and computational thinking

Disciplinary Core Ideas

HS-PS1.B. Chemical Reactions

Crosscutting Concepts

Energy and Matter in Systems

Performance Expectations

HS-PS1-5. Apply scientific principles and evidence to provide an explanation about the effects of changing the temperature or concentration of the reacting particles on the rate at which a reaction occurs.
HS-PS1-7. Use mathematical representations to support the claim that atoms, and therefore mass, are conserved during a chemical reaction.