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Video- Just how small is an atom

By lgamboa - Posted on 17 June 2012 Just

How Small Is an Atom?

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Hi Guys. I find this video “just how small is an atom” so interesting and definitely will be useful when I teach the fundamental particles of matter.

a. It showed visually and I may say so creatively the sizes of atoms and its particles..nucleus and electrons..A comparison of size was presented using a scale that they can understand started of with the question on how many atoms are in a grapefruit.

b...its a good way to know and establish student’s prior knowledge….like atoms are about the size of a blueberry how big should a grapefruit be? Interesting right? This is something that they can visualize rather than what I unfortunately usually do ( which I am not going to share..he he he)…

c. The video goes on further by considering the size of the nucleus on how small it really is compared to an atom; and again using a scale they are familiar like blowing the blueberry (atom) to the size of the house where the nucleus is still so small to be seen; then to a football field where the nucleus can now be seen…as small as a marble..

d. The video also tackled the heavy mass of a nucleus ( where the mass of an atom is concentrated) by using a scale where the nucleus is compared with a box; the video asked how many cars should be placed inside of the box to have the same density as the nucleus…and its around 62 Billion cars…just about the total number of people on earth…

e. At the end of the video there are 5 questions to be answered to assess their understanding about the atoms.


Thanks, Leon