Worksheets and lesson ideas to challenge students aged 11 to 16 to think hard about equilibria and reversible reactions (GCSE and Key Stage 3)
Many students struggle with the concept of dynamic equilibrium, incorrectly assuming that equilibrium refers to a “balance” between reactants and products. The resources below strive to encourage students to understand the concepts in the context of a simple physical change involving H2O(l) moving to H2O(g). Students move on to apply their knowledge to chemical equilibria.
Modelling dynamic equilibria
GCSE models to help understand equilibria. This simple model uses a snowball fight to show students how concentrations of reactants and products remain constant at equilibrium. This lesson can be further developed to help students understand the concept of position of equilibrium.
GCSE activity to understand dynamic equilibria. The worksheet describes a simple model of evaporation and condensation in a closed system. Students use the model to understand what happens at dynamic equilibrium to rates of forward and reverse reactions and to the concentration of reactants and products. (PDF)
Changing the position of equilibrium
GCSE worksheet on the chemistry of cola and Le Chatelier’s principle. Students consider how to make the perfect drink of cola. They use their knowledge of equilibria and how changes can affect the position of equilibrium according to Le Chatelier’s principle. (PDF)
GCSE starter activity on position of equilibrium. Students are given two statements about a reaction at equilibrium. They use this information to determine whether the forward reaction is exothermic/endothermic and deduce stoichometry of gaseous reactants and products. This is an excellent activity to get students thinking about Le Chatelier’s principle. (PDF)