ALEX Classroom Resource


Energy Levels, Electrons, and Ionic Bonding

  Classroom Resource Information  


Energy Levels, Electrons, and Ionic Bonding


Content Source:

American Chemical Society
Type: Lesson/Unit Plan


In this lesson, students will look at animations and make drawings of the ionic bonding of sodium chloride (NaCl). Students will see that both ionic and covalent bonding start with the attractions of protons and electrons between different atoms. But in ionic bonding, electrons are transferred from one atom to the other and not shared like in covalent bonding. Students will use Styrofoam balls to make models of the ionic bonding in sodium chloride (salt).

Students will be able to explain the process of the formation of ions and ionic bonds.

Content Standard(s):
SC2015 (2015)
Grade: 8
Physical Science
1 ) Analyze patterns within the periodic table to construct models (e.g., molecular-level models, including drawings; computer representations) that illustrate the structure, composition, and characteristics of atoms and molecules.

NAEP Framework
NAEP Statement::
P12.2: Electrons, protons, and neutrons are parts of the atom and have measurable properties, including mass and, in the case of protons and electrons, charge. The nuclei of atoms are composed of protons and neutrons. A kind of force that is only evident at nuclear distances holds the particles of the nucleus together against the electrical repulsion between the protons.

NAEP Statement::
P12.3: In the Periodic Table, elements are arranged according to the number of protons (called the atomic number). This organization illustrates commonality and patterns of physical and chemical properties among the elements.

NAEP Statement::
P8.3a: All substances are composed of 1 or more of approximately 100 elements.

NAEP Statement::
P8.3b: The periodic table organizes the elements into families of elements with similar properties.

NAEP Statement::
P8.4a: Elements are a class of substances composed of a single kind of atom.

NAEP Statement::
P8.4b: Compounds are composed of two or more different elements.

NAEP Statement::
P8.5b: Metals and acids are examples of such classes.

NAEP Statement::
P8.5c: Metals are a class of elements that exhibit common physical properties such as conductivity and common chemical properties such as reacting with nonmetals to produce salts.

Unpacked Content
Scientific And Engineering Practices:
Developing and Using Models
Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns
Disciplinary Core Idea: Matter and Its Interactions
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
  • Analyze patterns within the periodic table.
  • Construct models that illustrate the structure, composition, and characteristics of atoms.
  • Construct models that illustrate the structure, composition, and characteristics of molecules.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • Element
  • Atom
  • Protons
  • Nucleus
  • Electrons
  • Neutrons
  • Atomic number
  • Periodic table
  • Array
  • Atomic mass
  • Period
  • Group
  • Chemical properties
  • Physical properties
  • Molecule
  • Bond
  • Chemical bond
  • Valence electron
  • Ion
  • Ionic bond
  • Nonmetal
  • Metal
  • Covalent bond
  • Metallic bond
  • Conductivity
Students know:
  • Elements are substances composed of only one type of atom each having an identical number of protons in each nucleus.
  • Atoms are the basic units of matter and the defining structure of elements.
  • Atoms are made up of three particles: protons, neutrons and electrons.
  • The number of protons in an atom's nucleus is equal to the atomic number.
  • The periodic table arranges all the known elements in an informative array.
  • Elements are arranged left to right and top to bottom in order of increasing atomic number. Order generally coincides with increasing atomic mass.
  • Rows in the periodic table are called periods. As one moves from left to right in a given period, the chemical properties of the elements slowly change.
  • Columns in the periodic table are called groups. Elements in a given group in the periodic table share many similar chemical and physical properties.
  • The period number of an element signifies the highest energy level an electron in that element occupies (in the unexcited state). The number of electrons in a period increases as one traverses down the periodic table; therefore, as the energy level of the atom increases, the number of energy sub-levels per energy level increases.
  • A molecule is formed when two or more atoms bond together chemically.
  • A chemical bond is the result of different behaviors of the outermost or valence electrons of atoms.
  • Ionic bonds are the result of an attraction between ions that have opposite charges. Ionic bonds usually form between metals and nonmetals; elements that participate in ionic bonds are often from opposite ends of the periodic table. One example of a molecule that contains an ionic bond is table salt, NaCl.
  • Covalent bonds form when electrons are shared between atoms rather than transferred from one atom to another. The two bonds in a molecule of carbon dioxide, CO2, are covalent bonds.
  • Metallic bonds exist only in metals, such as aluminum, gold, copper, and iron. In metals, each atom is bonded to several other metal atoms, and their electrons are free to move throughout the metal structure. This special situation is responsible for the unique properties of metals, such as their high conductivity.
Students are able to:
  • Analyze patterns within the periodic table to construct models of atomic and molecular structure, composition, and characteristics.
  • Identify the relevant components of the atomic and molecular models.
  • Describe relationships between components of the atomic and molecular models.
Students understand that:
  • Patterns in the periodic table predict characteristic properties of elements. These trends exist because of the similar atomic structure of the elements within their respective group families or periods, and because of the periodic nature of the elements.
  • The structure, composition, and characteristics of atoms and molecules are dependent upon their position in the periodic table.
AMSTI Resources:
AMSTI Module:
Experimenting with Mixtures, Compounds, and Elements

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SCI.AAS.8.1- Identify parts of an atom (i.e. protons, neutrons, electrons); recognize that the periodic table is organized to show patterns of common traits of elements; locate metals and nonmetals on the periodic table.

Tags: atom, covalent bonding, electrons, ionic bonding, protons, sodium chloride
License Type: Custom Permission Type
See Terms:
For full descriptions of license types and a guide to usage, visit :
  This resource provided by:  
Author: Stephanie Carver