Study of Matter - Classification is the key


Chemical and Physical

Classifying the world around us is a staple of the scientific disciplines. Biology has taxonomy (Kingdom, Phylum, Class), geology has a system to classify rocks (igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic), even the Drug Enforcement Administration uses a classification scheme to group substances based upon their potential for abuse, medical use in the US, and the accepted safety of the substance while under medical supervision. Chemistry classifies matter based upon its chemical and physical properties. Both types of properties are then classified further to gain a deeper understanding of the matter studied.



learning activity Scroll your mouse over the science disciplines to see examples of how chemistry has influenced the understanding within.
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Here's a video describing the differences between chemical and physical properties.



Being able to identify signs of a chemical and physical property can help classify matter quickly. Keep an eye out for key words, like react or to form, (both chemical attributes), density, phase like solid, liquid or gas, or color (all physical attributes).


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