Lesson Plan: Bulk Properties of an Ideal Gas Physics

This lesson plan includes the objectives, prerequisites, and exclusions of the lesson teaching students how to calculate the relationship between changes in the pressure, volume, and temperature of an ideal gas.


Students will be able to

  • define an ideal gas as a gas consisting of particles that do not interact with each other and have negligible size,
  • identify bulk properties of an object as those that are the result of the average behavior of a large number of particles and in the case of an ideal gas as pressure, volume, and temperature,
  • describe the relationship between the terms of the ideal gas law expressed in the form 𝑃𝑉=π‘˜π‘‡,
  • recognize that the constant of proportionality, π‘˜, is itself proportional to the mass of the gas,
  • apply the formula 𝑃1𝑉1𝑇1=𝑃2𝑉2𝑇2 to calculate changes in 𝑃, 𝑉, and 𝑇, demonstrating that the value of π‘˜ is not required for such calculations provided the mass of the gas is constant,
  • use the ideal gas law to calculate relative changes in the mass of gases where 𝑃, 𝑉, and 𝑇 may change.


Students should already be familiar with

  • Kelvin temperature,
  • Boyle’s law,
  • Charles’ law,
  • Gay-Lussac’s law (the pressure law).


Students will not cover

  • 𝑃𝑉=𝑛𝑅𝑇,
  • 𝑃𝑉=π‘π‘˜π‘‡,
  • quantitative relationship between 𝑇 and particle KE.

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