In this class experiment, studentsseparatea mixture of sand and salt, portraying the an essential means the separating a mixture that aninsolublematerial native one that issoluble

This is a really straightforward experiment. It can be brought out personally or in groups of two. Pupils have to stand up throughout heating activities and beware of hot salt spitting when evaporation is virtually complete.

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Eye protectionBeaker, 250 cm3Glass stirring rodFilter funnelFilter paperConical flask, 250 cm3Evaporating basinBunsen burnerHeat resistant matTripodGauze


Mixture of sand and also sodium chloride (salt), about 6–7 g per group of students (asuitable sand–salt mixture have to contain around 20% salt through mass)

Health, safety and technical notes

Wear eye security throughout this experiment.Pupils have to stand up throughout heating tasks and beware of warm salt spitting once evaporation is almost complete.Sodium chloride (eg table salt), NaCl(s)- see CLEAPSSHazcard HC047b.


Pour the sand–salt mixture right into the beaker so that it just covers the base.Add about 50 cm3of water, or add water till the beaker is around one-fifth full.Stir the mixture gently for a few minutes.Filter the mixture right into a conical flask.Pour the filtrate right into an evaporating basin.Heat the salt solution gently till it starts come decrepitate (spit).CARE:Keep eye security on and do not obtain too close.Turn turn off the Bunsen burner and also let the damp salt dried in the dish.
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Source: Royal society of Chemistry

Equipment because that a course experiment to different a mixture the sand and salt.

Teaching notes

If desired, the experiment can be expanded to isolate dried samples that sand and also salt. To do this, the damp sand in the filter file can be transferred to another sheet of dry filter paper, and, through folding and dabbing, the sample have the right to be dried. If necessary, one more piece of filter file can be used.

Students frequently like to present their specimens in little bottles for approval, so a spatula can be provided to accomplish this. While the first student of a pair is transferring the sand, the other can be scraping the dried salt indigenous the evaporating dish and also transferring it to an additional specimen bottle.

If this expansion is carried out, the students should be encouraged to label the bottles. They have to be told the all samples ready in this method need to it is in labelled, even if in this case, it must be obvious which problem is which.

Student questions

Why have the right to sand and salt it is in separated making use of this experiment?Why is the salt, sand and also water mixture stirred in action 3?Why is the salt systems heated in step 6?How might the last traces of water be gotten rid of from your samples to ensure that they are entirely dry?Give two factors why the sand you have actually obtained could still be contaminated with salt.How can you adapt your experiment to achieve a purer sample of sand?Give two reasons why the salt you have obtained could still it is in contaminated with sand.How can you adapt your experiment to attain a purer sample that salt?

Primary scientific research teaching notes

If you teach main science, the following information is design to help you use this resource.

Skill development

Childrenwill construct their functioning scientifically skills by:

Drawing conclusions and raising further questions that could be investigated, based upon their data and also observations.Using ideal scientific language and ideas to explain, evaluate and also communicate their methods and also findings.

Learning outcomes

Children will:

Observe that some materials will dissolve in liquid to form a solution.Describe just how to recuperate a substance from a solution.Use knowledge of solids, liquids and also gases come decide exactly how mixtures can be separated, consisting of through filtering, sieving and also evaporating.Demonstrate that dissolving, mixing and also changes that state are reversible changes.

Concepts supported

Children will learn:

That there space various techniques that deserve to be supplied to separate various mixtures.That dissolve is a reversible reaction.That not all solids space soluble.That the price of dissolving have the right to be impacted by miscellaneous factors.That melting and also dissolving space not the exact same process.

Suggested task use

This task can be used as a whole-class investigation, with youngsters working in tiny groups or pairs to watch at exactly how to different the salt and also sand. This could administer a stimulus for additional investigations looking at exactly how to separate other mixtures the solids, one of two people of various particle sizes or by solubility.

Practical considerations

Primary schools frequently don’t have Bunsen burners, for this reason viable options need to be sourced. Similarly, it might be challenging to resource the equipment needed come evaporate water to recuperate the dissolved salt. Head stands and tea lights deserve to work well as possible alternatives.

When carrying out this activity be conscious that part insoluble solids are able to type suspensions. This is where the particles show up to have dissolved, when in fact they have been spread out out throughout the liquid. A good indicator the a suspension has developed is the the liquid will go cloudy or the particles can be heard scraping together the mixture is stirred.

The layout the this task is really prescriptive as the procstarrkingschool.netre is collection out top top a action by action basis. An open challenge activity, with kids working in small groups and also devising their very own methods, would expand the children’s thinking. Various groups’ suggestions could be compared and evaluated together a class.

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Additional information

This is a resource from thePractical Chemistry project, emerged by the Nuffield foundation and the Royal culture of Chemistry. This collection of end 200 practical tasks demonstrates a wide selection of chemical concepts and also processes. Each activity contains substantial information for teachers and technicians, including complete technical notes and step-by-step procstarrkingschool.netres. Valuable Chemistry tasks accompanyPractical PhysicsandPractical Biology.

Health and safety checked, 2016


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