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Well begin by looking at this chemical reaction: hydrogen

gas and chlorine gas combine to make hydrochloric acid


(place word equation card down).
So this is how we can express this chemical reaction
using words, and thats why its known as a word
equation.
We can now use this word equation to write a chemical
equation. We do this by taking each of these things (point
to hydrogen gas, chlorine gas, hydrochloric acid) and
writing the chemical formula for each of them.
So the chemical equation looks like this (place chemical
equation card down).
Hydrogen gas; its chemical formula is H2
And is written as a plus
Choline gas is Cl2
The arrow represents combine to make
And lastly hydrochloric acid; its chemical formula is
HCl
So lets look at the number and type of atoms that we
have on both sides of the arrow.
What Ive done is draw some diagrams so we can do this
visually, and see the atoms and how they recombine.
Remember when we did the web quest last time and
found out that the small number after a symbol, known
as a subscript, tells you how many atoms of that
particular element are in the molecule. Thats important
to remember for this lesson.

Lets start with hydrogen (place hydrogen molecule). So


we have a molecule of hydrogen gas, which is made up
of two hydrogen atoms.
We have chlorine gas (place chlorine molecule), so heres
a molecule of that, two chlorine atoms.
And finally we have a molecule of hydrochloric acid
(place hydrochloric acid molecule), made up of one
hydrogen atom and one chlorine atom.
So as we learnt last lesson, on the left side of the arrow
we have what we start with, our before or reactants
(place reactants card) and on the right side of the arrow
we have our after or products (place products card).
What I want to do know is find out whether this is a
balanced equation. So heres the definition (place
balanced equation definition card and read it out).
So keeping this definition in mind, lets look at the visual
representation and work out whether it is or is not a
balanced equation No, it is not. Heres why.
On this side of the arrow I have two hydrogen atoms
(point to two hydrogen atoms on left side), and over on
this side I have one (point to one hydrogen atom on right
side).
Over here I have two chlorine atoms (point to two
chlorine atoms on left side), and over here I have one
(point to one chlorine atom on right side).
So this is not a balanced equation, as we dont have the
same number of each type of atom on both sides.
Because it isnt balanced, we call it an unbalanced
equation (place unbalanced card).

Unbalanced equations arent very useful in chemistry, so


we have to make them balanced before we can use them
to solve problems.
So in order to balance this, were going to make a few
adjustments.
To balance a chemical equation, we change the number
of these molecules (start adding hydrogen molecules)
that we have (start adding chlorine molecules), until we
find a combination (start adding hydrochloric acid
molecules) that has the same number of each type of
atom on both sides. Its kind of like a puzzle.
It might turn out that to balance the equation we might
need three of these (point to hydrogen molecules), one of
these (point to chlorine molecules), and two of these
(point to hydrochloric acid molecules).
So we play around with the number of each one of these
until we find a combination that gives us the same
number of atoms on both sides.
So heres what we do to balance this equation.
We have two hydrogens here, two chlorines here, and
over here we have one hydrogen and one chlorine.
So if I get another molecule of hydrochloric acid, I now
have two hydrogens here (point to two hydrogen atoms
on left side), and two hydrogens here (point to two
hydrogen atoms on right side).
I have two chlorines here (point to two chlorine atoms on
left side), two chlorines here (point to two chlorine atoms
on right side).

And now this equation is balanced. Well, almost. Weve


balanced the visual equation, but we need to balance the
written equation.
To balance this, what well do is put a two in front of the
HCl here (place 2), to show that we have two of these.
Now the equation is balanced.
You can see that we have the same number of each type
of atom on both sides of the equation.