The first period (row) contains two elements to match the two electrons on the first shell; the second period contains eight elements (to match the eight electrons on the second shell), and so on. Now we’re ready for our next round, this time with a bachelor and three bachelorettes.Atoms in the same family (column) on the table have the same number of valence, or outer shell, electrons. As the game goes on, the students become skilled at picking eligible bachelors or bachelorettes because they discover the patterns on the periodic table.If the game is successful, students will discover logical pairings of whole families on the periodic table. Nope, not a match...” Together, we discover that Mr.When students finish playing, they understand the logic inherent in the shape of the periodic table. Magnesium has two electrons to offer, and since Ms. We draw our new compound with a big heart around it, choose a destination for the pair (like Cancun or the Bahamas), and then send them off with a big Dating Game Kiss!Also, the discovery we make at the end of the lesson is priceless.Kids often wonder about the shape of the periodic table, and when we discover that our bachelors can pair with several different bachelorettes from the same family, the kids construct their own understanding of the periodic table.Wrapping it up This game is enjoyed more than almost any other activity that I do during the year.First of all, it is great fun, both for the students and for me.
We can see chemicals bubble, change colors, or give off smoke, but unless we examine what is happening on the atomic level, we are presenting chemistry as a magical experience rather than a scientific reality.The Atomic Dating Game was created to help students visualize atoms combining, and to increase student understanding of how, and why, combinations occur.Prior to the activity, students must have already learned how to draw electron shells.They must combine with atoms of other elements to become stable.When an atom of one element enters into chemical combination with another element, both atoms usually attain a stable outer shell consisting of eight electrons.It is a day when the kids are so involved in the fun of the game, they don’t realize they are learning.The second reason I love to play this game is for the wealth of information that can be taught or reviewed while playing.With that in mind, if you have any unstable atoms hanging around your classroom let your students find them a match!Evelyn Cummo is a former science teacher from Northeast Guilford Middle School in Mc Leansville, North Carolina. Matthews is an associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the University of North Carolina – Greensboro.Have fun with the game, but be sensitive to the cultural issues in your school.Issues such as dating, relationships, and television game shows can be sensitive topics.