Today we began with a very simple and fundamental question. What is a chemical reaction?
An everyday, physical change is when you simply change the appearance of an object. For example, imagine ripping a piece of paper in half. On the other hand, a chemical reaction is when you change an object’s chemical formula. It can be as stunning as a fireworks display or as boring as watching a plant grow. In any case, there are actual changes to the chemistry of the objects; the actual atoms are being broken apart and put back together.
In class today, we saw our first example of a chemical reaction (the Blue Bottle). We also began to classify real-world changes as physical or chemical by looking for four clues: color change, temperature change, bubbling, and light. If an experiment produces one of more of these clues, there’s a good bet it could involve a chemical reaction!