Using AACT Resources to Teach Chemical Naming and Formula Writing

By Kim Duncan on December 5, 2017


As chemistry teachers plan activities for their students, AACT will highlight resources from our high school library that help to reinforce topics in different units throughout the school year.

In our last news post we looked at resources that focused on chemical bonding. We now move on to lessons and activities that can be used to support a unit plan for teaching chemical names and formulas. This includes the topics of naming ionic compounds, covalent compounds, and acids.

The Naming Covalent Compounds lesson plan poses a series of guiding questions that will engage students’ literacy skills and allow them to discover the rules of naming and formula writing for simple compounds. By the end of this lesson, students will be able to write a chemical formula for a covalent compound and name it using the appropriate rules of nomenclature.

Covalent naming

Introduce students to ionic compound formulas and names using formula cards in the Introduction to Naming and Formula Writing for Ionic Compounds lesson. The cards will help them learn how to pair ionic compound names with their formulas and also summarize a set of rules for naming ionic substances.

Ionic naming

If your students need more practice with naming, have them try one or both of the following resources. In the Molecular Compound Dice activity, students use dice and element cards to name binary molecular compounds and then draw their Lewis Diagrams. If they are still having problems with ionic substances, they can use the Ionic Bonding Puzzle activity to create and name neutral ionic compounds using puzzle pieces.

Use the Naming Compounds reference chart to help your students gain a better understanding of how to name ionic compounds, covalent compounds, and acids. The flowchart helps students follow the logic behind naming different types of compounds.

Naming chart

We hope that these activities help you reinforce several of the topics covered in a unit about naming chemical substances. Most of these lessons were made possible by great teachers sharing their own resources. We need your help to keep the collection growing. Do you have a great demonstration, activity, or lesson about topics relating to this topic that you would like to share with the community? Please send it along for consideration.