Howdy there 👋🏼
We are back in scimatics with another project, “Chemistry coding”.
The driving question
How can the behaviour of matter be explained by the kinetic molecular theory and atomic theory?
Kinetic molecular theory (aka KMT) and atomic theory are two different theories that we pull from when describing why matter does what it does. The states of matter (solid, liquid, gas, and plasma) occur because of how much kinetic energy the matter has in it. Heat adds kinetic energy and the cold takes away kinetic energy. An easy example of KMT is how water behaves in its three states; ice doesn’t have a lot of kinetic energy and is very cold and solid, liquid water has more kinetic energy than ice and therefore is warmer than ice, and water vapour is hot, a gas, and has lots of kinetic energy.
Atomic theory can be a bit complicated but I will try to keep this short. Everything is made up of atoms. Atoms consist of electrons, protons, and neutrons, and certain numbers of each make the atom hold the properties of a certain substance. There have been many different models of the atom throughout the years. But the current understanding of the atom is that there is a nucleus in the centre of an atom that contains the protons and neutrons and electrons exist outside of the nucleus. Different atoms join together to make molecules and a mixture of atoms and molecules can be found in a compound substance.
Now I know that that was really long and there is so much stuff that I didn’t talk about but I’m going to stop myself. Hopefully you can see that I learned a lot about atomic theory and KMT because at the beginning of this project I knew next to nothing about either of them.
Here is my project start mind map;
In this project we created an interactive matter simulator or game which models kinetic molecular theory and atomic theories. The simulator/game was created using a coding platform called Scratch. I have had previous experience using block coding so that gave me an advantage with this project (It also helped my friends out when they needed help with the coding). We learned about historical models of the atom and had to create an image of a substance atom/molecule of our choice. This was our milestone 2 for this project and here is mine:
The actual coding was a huge part of this project too and here are some screenshots of what my coding looked like behind the scenes;
Questioning and predicting: Demonstrate a sustained curiosity about a specific topic or problem of personal interest.
This competency is sometimes very hard for me to extend at. I find myself getting easily distracted after I have been working on one thing for an extended amount of time (aka all the time I spent block coding the simulator).
Scientific communication: Communicate ideas, findings, and solutions to problems using language, representations, and digital technologies.
The Bohr and Dalton particle models that were in my simulator are a good way of showing that I can represent things like particle motion in a clear and understandable way.
Reasoning and analyzing: Use logic and patterns (including coding) to solve puzzles and play games.
I had to try a lot of different code scripts (It took a lot of problem solving and troubleshooting) before finding the one that worked. But in the end I was very proud of how smoothly my simulator ran all thanks to the coding I did behind the scenes.
In conclusion (basically a summary of this post)
I learned a lot about matter, kinetic molecular theory, atomic theories, and coding. Coding was hard and painstaking at times but I am very proud of my final project. I showed great promise in the curricular competencies and can’t wait to extend my skills even further next time.
P.s. Here is the final simulator that I made: The simulator