Abby Arsenic’s Ionic Identity Crisis
Once upon a time, there was a girl named Abby Arsenic who lived on 33 Four Way in the Periodic Table neighborhood. She had lived here her whole life because her atomic number was 33. Every road, or period, of the neighborhood was numbered, all the way from One Street to Seven Avenue. She had two good friends, Selina Selenium and Greg Germanium, who lived on either side of her. Abby had a good life and she was happy. She was fascinated with her neighbor, Kevin Krypton. She wanted to be just like him. But the problem was, she didn’t have enough electrons!
You see, All the atoms in the neighborhood had different numbers of protons, neutrons and electrons in their brains. The protons and neutrons made the center of the brain. It controlled rational thinking. Protons, neutrons, and electrons are particles in an Atom. They each have a charge that determines the Atom’s charge. But generally, each atom is neutrally charged because the amount of protons and neutrons are the same in the periodic table of elements. Based on that, you can infer that protons are positively charged, neutrons are neutrally charged, and electrons are negatively charged. Abby only had 33 electrons, but she wanted to have 36, just like Kevin. She wanted to be. . .
. . . an ion!
Ion’s are a type of atom where the atom doesn’t have the normal amount of electrons. Cations are where they have less electrons than they are supposed to have, and anions are when they have more. They do this so that they can have a full outer shell.
One day, Abby decided that she needed to find three more electrons, but she knew she couldn’t do it on her own. So, she talked to Selina and Greg.
“I’m going on a quest, and I need your help,” she said in her best brave voice, “I need three more electrons!” Selina agreed, but Greg was hesitant.
“Why do you need more electrons?” he asked.
“I want to be like Kevin. He’s tough and stable. He’s a real role model,” Abby responded. “He also ”Greg agreed, so they started to prepare.
A few days later, it was time to leave. All three elements were excited and jittery, ready to go. They were just about to get going, when Abby’s cousin Fifi Phosphorus dropped by to wish them well. Fifi gave Abby a hug and told her to be safe, and off they went.
Around the neighborhood they went, asking the other elements if they could give her the electrons she desperately wanted. But, the problem was, all of the elements who lived near her were anions! None of them could give any electrons to Abby. They could only take more to make themselves ions.
She quickly started losing hope. “We’ll never find anyone who will give me the electrons I need to be like Kevin!”
“Don’t say that!” Selina exclaimed, “We’ll find someone eventually!”
“Yea!” Greg said, patting Abby on the back.
“Lets go look on the other side of the transition metal forest!” Selina said with confidence, “I’m sure we’ll find someone there who can give you a few electrons! After all, they all do have one extra metal.”
Alkali Earth metals are a group of metals that live in the western most part of the Periodic Table Neighborhood, and they all have one valence electron. Valence electrons are the number of electrons in the outermost shell. Therefore, that is why Abby, Selinia, and Greg all went there to ask them.
And so off they went, through the transition metal forest, careful to avoid the thorny bushes and pointy rocks.
Finally, they made it to the other side of the forest.
“We’re here!” They all exclaimed. They went up to Mr. Potassium’s door and knocked.
“Hello, Mr. Potassium, sir.” Abby said politely, “I was wondering if you could give me one of your electrons?”
“Ok, sure.” Mr. Potassium replied, and gave her one of his electrons. Next, they went to Ms. Sodium’s house, and then Mx. Lithium’s. They were all happy to give one of their electrons to Abby, because then they became ions as well!
She was ecstatic! She could finally be like Kevin Krypton! Her friends congratulated her and she thanked them for helping her. They went back across the forest, with Abby gleaming with pride.