Evidence of Chemical Reaction

Featured in PASCO’s Chemistry through Inquiry Teacher Guide

Chemistry through Inquiry Teacher Guide (PS-2871C)

This manual features over 25 inquiry based labs covering the fundamental concepts of chemistry.

Lab Summary

Use a fast response temperature sensor to distinguish between physical changes and chemical reactions and identify unknown changes as either physical changes or chemical reactions using evidence to support your decision.


During this investigation, students:

  • Observe the four main types of evidence that suggest a new chemical substance has formed.
  • Distinguish between physical changes and chemical reactions.
  • Identify processes as involving physical changes or chemical reactions.
  • Identify the reactants and products in a chemical reaction.
  • Explain the difference between exothermic and endothermic chemical reactions.


Students conduct the following procedures:

  • Perform three chemical reactions, collect temperature versus time data for each, and record evidence that a new substance was formed for each.
  • Perform three physical changes, and describe the resulting new physical appearance.
  • Perform three additional changes, and identify them as chemical reactions or physical changes based on the observations recorded.
  • Identify each chemical reaction as exothermic or endothermic.

Sensors / Equipment Used

PASPORT Chemistry Sensor (PS-2170)

Allows students to measure Temperature, pH/ISE/ORP, Absolute Pressure & Voltage in one sensor. For use with PASPORT Interfaces.

Materials Used

Balance - 2 or 3 per class
Hot plate 
Graduated cylinder, 100-mL 
Graduated cylinder, 10-mL 
Beaker, 250-mL - 2
Test tube, 15-mm x 100-mm - 7
Test tube rack 
Test tube holder 
Stir rod
Beaker for collecting rinse water 
Weighing paper 
Wash bottle filled with distilled (deionized) water
Water (from the tap) - 255 mL
Calcium carbonate ~0.2 g
White vinegar (~5% acetic acid) - 2 mL
1.0 M Citric acid - 2 mL
1.0 M Sodium bicarbonate - 2 mL
0.5 M Copper(II) sulfate - 2 mL
1.0 M Sodium hydroxide - 2 mL
0.05 M Silver nitrate - 2 mL
0.1 M Sodium chloride - 2 mL
Lauric acid ~ 0.5 g
Effervescent tablet 
Colored drink powder ~ 0.2 g

Your Bundle Options:

Option 1:

Chemistry Starter Sensor Bundle (PS-2921)

A sensor bundle specifically designed to get you started using probeware in your chemistry lab. Also: perform 22 Lab Activities from Chemistry through Inquiry teacher guide.

Option 2:

Chemistry Standard Sensor Bundle (PS-2927C)

Contains the sensors and probes needed to perform the 17 experiments in the Advanced Chemistry Teacher Guide and 22 labs in the Chemistry through Inquiry Guide.