Lesson Plan: Isotopes Physics

This lesson plan includes the objectives, prerequisites, and exclusions of the lesson teaching students how to work out the number of protons, neutrons, and electrons an atom of an isotope has from its chemical symbol.


Students will be able to

  • define an isotope,
  • calculate the number of protons, neutrons, and electrons for an atom of an isotope,
  • recall some of the common isotopes of carbon,
  • identify isotopes of an element from their chemical symbols.


Students should already be familiar with

  • chemical symbols and formulas,
  • the structure of the atom,
  • atomic number and mass number.


Students will not cover

  • using isotopic abundances to calculate average atomic mass,
  • uses of isotopes.

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