Shapes of Simple Molecules

Better shape up! Part two in a six-installment series describing properties of elements, mixtures, and compounds delves into the basics of molecular geometry. Scholars learn that these shapes are determined by bonding and non-bonding electrons through electron pair repulsion theory. The content includes bond angles and how lone pair electrons influence them.

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Instructional Ideas

  • Show the video on day one of your unit on VSEPR and molecular geometry to start your class off right
  • Consider passing out molecular geometry kits to use during or after viewing the resource to allow pupils to build their own molecules
Classroom Considerations

  • Assumes prior knowledge of dot-and-cross diagrams and bonding electrons 

  • The narrator builds each successive molecule based upon the tetrahedral shape of methane, which gives learners a good starting reference point
  • Simple animations provide important visual cues, particularly for Chemistry I classes

  • None