Liquids are classified as acids, bases, or neutral based on the concentration of hydrogen ions present in it. If a substance is neutral it has an equal amount of positive and negative ions present in it. If a liquid has a greater concentration of positive ions in the form of hydrogen than say water, it is classified as an acid. If the liquid has less hydrogen ions than water, it is a base. An acid and a base can be used to neutralize one another. When this occurs salt and water are formed. By the time we are ready for school, we have all heard the about acids and how bad they are. Many acids are very helpful to use in everyday life. When looking at acids and bases we are completely worried about the change or transfer of hydrogen or hydroxide ions. If a particular substance has many hydrogen ions, it is an acid. If it has a bunch of hydroxide ions, it’s a base. We use a pH scale to classify substance that ranges from 0 to 14, with 7 being neutral (meaning neither an acid nor a base. The closer a substance is to 0, the more of an acid it is. The closer to 14 a substance is, the more it is a base.
You will learn how to identify acids and bases based on their chemical symbol and you will learn to predict where they might fall on the pH scale. You will also begin to realize the relative strength of these substances based on the nature of the elements that are involved. You will also learn how the nature of a liquid can help you understand if they are good conductors of electricity. The worksheets work on identifying acids and bases based on a number of different criteria and your understanding of ion transfer.