In this Activity, students use their deductive reasoning skills as they identify formulas of unknown elements and compounds modeled by paperclips. Each color of paperclip represents a different element, with linkages between different paperclips in appropriate ratios representing 20 unknowns. The Activity supports formation of a basic understanding of elements and compounds, including allotropes, oxidation states, and diatomic elements. This Activity supports curriculum units dealing with physical and chemical properties of matter, nomenclature, and how various metal-nonmetal compounds form.
Carmen Fies and Diana Mason, J. Chem. Educ. 2008, 85, p1648A.