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Crystal Garden Kit

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Students observe the osmotic pressure phenomenon of colorful upward-growing metallic silicate precipitates. The osmotic pressure phenomenon is the clue to why the precipitates are upward growing rather than sinking. Students illustrate and model what happens at a particulate level and write balanced chemical equations for the 4 precipitation reactions in this demonstration. They then connect the osmotic pressure phenomenon to real-world applications.

Time Requirement
Total, 25 minutes. Teacher prep, 10 minutes. Demonstration and discussion, 15 minutes.

Digital Resources
Includes 1-year access to digital resources that support 3-dimensional instruction for NGSS. Digital resources may include a teacher manual and student guide, pre-lab activities and setup videos, phenomenon videos, simulations, and post-lab analysis and assessments.

Performance Expectations

Crosscutting Concepts

Disciplinary Core Ideas
PS1.A: Structure and Properties of Matter
PS1.B: Chemical Reactions

Science and Engineering Practices
Developing and Using Models
Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions

Learning Objectives

  • Write balanced equations for the formation of metallic silicates.
  • Understand how the osmotic pressure of water produces columns of metallic silicates.
  • Illustrate and explain the silicate precipitation reactions on a molecular level.

Prerequisite Knowledge and Skills
Students should be familiar with osmosis and osmotic pressure; writing chemical formulas; writing and balancing chemical equations and labeling states of matter for each reactant and product; and predicting products for double-replacement reactions.


What’s Included:
Needed But Not Included:
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