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Achievement objective MW 6-2

Students will:

  • distinguish between atoms, molecules, and ions (includes covalent and ionic bonding); Link atomic structure to the organisation of the periodic table; Use particle theory to explain factors that affect chemical processes.


  • Uses the electron configuration of atoms to predict whether they are likely to form ionic or covalently bonded compounds.
  • Uses models and pictures to show the formation of simple compounds, identifying the differences between ions, atoms, and molecules.
  • Classifies reactions according to particle interactions.
  • Links the position of elements in the periodic table to characteristics of their atomic structures.
  • Explains the relationship between reaction rate and particle collisions.
  • Uses the correct formulae for selected atoms, ions, and molecules.

Possible context elaborations

  • Patterns in electron configuration and bonding of elements 1–20.
  • Build a large-scale physical model to show the arrangement of atoms in molecules.
  • Why do we use kindling to light a fire but logs once it is well lit?
  • The oceans: a structure of water and salts.
  • The atmosphere: the nature of the gases that make up the air around us.
  • Getting the best out of coffee grounds: percolator or plunger?
  • A 'cycle of copper reactions' that can be classified according to the interactions of the particles.
  • Equations, using formulae to show the composition of substances before and after a chemical reaction.

Assessment for qualifications

At the time of publication, achievement standards were in development to align them with The New Zealand Curriculum. Please ensure that you are using the correct version of the standards by going to the  NZQA website.

The NZQA subject-specific resources pages are very helpful. From there, you can find all the achievement standards and links to assessment resources, both internal and external.

Learn more with NZQA subject resources for:

Aligned level 1 achievement standards were registered for use in 2011 and level 2 for use in 2012; level 3 will be registered for use in 2013.

Learning described by this objective could be assessed using one or more of these achievement standards:

  • Science AS90944 1.5, AS90945 1.6, AS90946 1.7, AS90947 1.8
  • Chemistry AS90930 1.1, AS90932 1.3, AS90933 1.4, AS90934 1.5

Last updated September 15, 2020