Balancing Equations: A Hands on Activity


Balancing Chemical Equations Activity – one of my long time favorite activities. Students will learn how to read formulas, count atoms, create and read chemical equations, and balance chemical equations using a hands on activity with color coded formulas cards.


Lesson Resources: Create one set of materials for each pair of students. Store in a large zip-top bag

  • Worksheet: handout with directions (pdf)
  • Formula cards (pdf) – laminate and reuse each year
  • Coefficient cards (pdf) – laminate and reuse each year
  • Answer Key for the balanced equations (pdf)
  • Google Slides (NEW) – Balancing Equations Answer Key Public Link
    • These slides can be used to review answers at the end of the lesson
    • You can also print the slides then laminate to use as Task Cards at a hands on station with beads to represent each atom
    • For more advanced students, you can use molecular models and build each model.
  • Practice balancing equations worksheet (pdf) and more from



15 thoughts on “Balancing Equations: A Hands on Activity

  1. Anonymous February 27, 2022 / 2:35 am

    Thank you a lot for this great resource.. I really appreciate it. It saved us time 🌺


  2. Anonymous July 26, 2021 / 1:24 pm

    I have been teaching balancing equations for years, and this is the best thing I have found. Thank you so much.


  3. Anonymous March 9, 2021 / 11:46 am

    Thank you so much super helpful


  4. Anonymous July 11, 2020 / 11:28 am

    Thank for your sharing. This activity is very useful for my class.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Anonymous October 16, 2019 / 5:36 pm

    Just introduced Balancing chemical equations to my students and am excited to try this tomorrow to help them understand this concept! Thank you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Patricia March 27, 2019 / 1:04 pm

    Tried this today with my 8th graders today . It was great. They worked together in pairs and were so enthusiastic when they solved the equations. Thank you!


    • Liz LaRosa March 27, 2019 / 3:11 pm

      Great to hear! Thanks for letting me know 🙂 Liz


  7. Anonymous January 9, 2019 / 2:33 pm

    Liz, thank you for sharing this activity. Saves a lot of time and is a great way to have students work with each other. Really appreciate it!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Jill April 18, 2018 / 2:51 pm

    Perfect for my 8th graders. Thank you SOO much for taking the time to do it right.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Dorothy Dwyer February 1, 2018 / 9:54 am

    I love this activity. I have used it for three years now and I think that it is very helpful for my 8th grade students to really learn that they cannot change the subscript to balance the equation. Having the answer key on Google slides is also very helpful! Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

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