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Title – Edible Atom
By – Matthew Besman
Primary Subject – Science
Secondary Subjects – Science
Grade Level – 4-6
A great lesson to use while teaching atoms and the periodic table is the Edible Atom Lab.
Lots of candy…
Large sugar cookies, M&M’s, skittles, marshmallows, peanut butter chips, chocolate chips, sprinkles, frosting, popcorn, raisins, jelly beans, plates, napkins, milk (optional)etc.
Set the candy in bowls at different stations in your room or on each lab table. The object of this lab is for students to choose an element from the periodic table and design the atom complete with protons, neutrons, electrons and if you get really crazy you can have them add mesons, quarks and gluons. I found that if you limit them to any element with an atomic number of 8 or less it makes the lab work much smoother.
Before the student atom creation can be eaten, the student must make a labeled drawing of their atom and give all information of the element on a 3×5 index card. (Atomic Number, Atomic Mass, Symbol, Element Name, 1 use for the element, metal, non-metal, or metalloid) After you check that all info is correct… then it’s eat ’em up time.
My kids loved this lesson. They never had so much fun learning about atoms and elements. You could also do this type of lesson with molecules.
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