Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Types of Nuclear Decay - Section 2: Explain


For this lesson I use a very simple demonstration to help students visualize the difference between alpha, beta, and gamma radiation.  

There are more elaborate ways to show the differences, but I find that this is effective.

Although types of radiation is a rather basic concept, students still get confused by the three types.  Therefore, by having this visual of big and bulky balloons as alpha, a ball for beta, and a laser for gamma they are more likely to remember the difference between the three.  

  Simple Demonstration Can Still be Effective
  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Simple Demonstration Can Still be Effective
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Types of Nuclear Decay

Unit 9: Unit 10: Nuclear Chemistry and Final Exam Review
Lesson 2 of 8

Objective: Students will be able to explain why some atoms decay and differentiate between the three major types of decay (alpha, beta, and gamma) through taking notes and performing practice questions.

Big Idea: Unstable atoms can decay through alpha, beta, or gamma emission.

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visualizing decay
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