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Essential Understandings for Chemistry

Essential Understanding #1:

Matter: Matter is neither created nor destroyed in any chemical or physical process. Matter can be classified as elements, compounds, homogeneous mixtures or heterogeneous mixtue

Essential Understanding #2:

Measurements Specific to Chemistry: Meticulous measurements and mathematics play an essential role in understanding the major concepts of chemistry. A variety of technologies such as measuring instruments, calculators and computers are used in scientific investigations.

Essential Understanding #3:

The Atom: Atoms have specific properties and structures. Matter is made up of minute particles called atoms, which are composed of even smaller components (protons, neutrons & electrons) that have measurable properties, such as mass and electrical charge.

Essential Understanding #4:

Periodicity: Elements are arranged and grouped in the periodic table based on their properties. The periodic table is used to predict common properties of elements.

Essential Understanding #5:

Bonding and Formula Writing: Atoms interact with each other by transferring or sharing valence electrons forming ionic or covalent bonds. These outer electrons govern the chemical properties of the element.

Essential Understanding #6:

Chemical Equations and Reactions: Chemical formulas and equations can be used to obtain and communicate information about chemical reactions. Predictions can be made based on known quantities of reactants or products. In both chemical and physical reactions energy may be consumed but is never created or destroyed.

Essential Understanding #7:

Phases of Matter and Gas Laws: The Kinetic Molecular Theory is used to describe properties of solids, liquids, and gases. The higher the temperature, the greater the atomic or molecular motion. Changes in pressure, temperature or volume of a gas result in predictable changes in either of the other properties.

Essential Understanding #8:

Solutions: Solutions such as acids, bases, salts and non-electrolytes are homogenous mixtures having identifiable and predictable properties.