Of all the naturally occurring metals copper is one of the most useful and versatile. Evidence suggests copper has been used by humans for at least 10,000 years. Copper is used for architecture. It is used for electrical wiring, water pipes, and plumbing fixtures. It is found in automobiles and a variety of electronics and electronic devices. It is in electrical motors, generators, and turbines. It is an important part of heat exchangers found in refrigeration and air conditioning units, it is on circuit boards and in electromagnets.
While copper is typically extracted from copper-containing mineral ores that must be treated and refined to obtain the pure metal, copper also exists in nature in its native elemental form. This is the rarest and most valuable form of copper as it is the easiest to process to obtain pure metal. In this activity, students will create specific environment conditions and examine the formation of native copper deposits over several days. Kit contains enough materials for 5 groups. Teacher’s Guide and Student Study and Analysis copymasters are included.
Aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)*
Disciplinary Core Ideas: PS1.A; PS1.B; ESS3.A
Performance Expectations: MS-PS1-2; MS-ESS3-1; HS-ESS3-2; HS-PS2-6
Cross Cutting Concepts: Structure and Function; Influence of Engineering, Technology and Science on Society and the Natural World; Patterns; Cause and Effect; Science Addresses Questions About the Natural and Material World
Engineering Practices: Analyzing and Interpreting Data; Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions; Scientific Knowledge is Based on Empirical Evidence; Engaging in Argument from Evidence; Obtaining, Evaluating, and Communicating Information
75g Copper Sulfate
75g Sodium Chloride
10 Iron Nails
5 Plastic Vials
20 Filter Paper Discs, 25mm
5 Hand Magnifiers
Materials Needed but not Supplied:
Distilled or Deionized Water
*”Next Generation Science Standards” is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards was involved in the production of, and does not endorse, this product.