Summer Research Program for Science Teachers

New Milford HS, New Jersey

2008

Finding the Average People Mass for the Element Called “Humans”

In this exercise you will find the Average People Mass of your classmates.  This number will be entered onto the periodic table of elements as the mass of the element “Human.”  There are two isotopes of the element Human in the room:  males and females.  The boys will find their average mass and the girls will find their average mass, and the two will be combined to find the APM of the entire species.  Your first step will be to convert your own weight into kilograms (People Mass Units), which is the unit of measure for mass (if you don’t want anyone to know what your weight is, then just make up a number that you would like it to be, no one will know).

________________/2.2 = ________kilograms

Now, find the mass of everyone else in the room that is the same gender as you, and average them out.

Total mass of people that are your gender/number of people that are that gender

_________/__________ = ________ kg.

Now find the average mass of the other gender in the room.  ___________.

Next, you will need to find the natural abundance of the two isotopes.  This is a measure of how common the isotopes are; the higher the natural abundance, the more likely you are to encounter this isotope.

How do you find the natural abundance of boys or girls?  It’s easy; just divide the number of boys by the total number of people in your sample, and the number of girls by the total number of people in your sample to find the natural abundance of each.  The total number of people in your sample will be the total number of people who added their mass to the calculations (the number of boys + number of girls).

Natural Abundance of Male Isotope = (number of males in room/number of students in room)

Natural Abundance of Male Isotope = (______/______) = ______

Natural Abundance of Female Isotope = (number of females in room/number of students in room)

Natural Abundance of Female Isotope = (_______/_______) = ______

Now that you have the average mass of the boys (the male isotope), and the girls (the female isotope), and their natural abundance, you can find the Average People Mass using the following formula:

APM = (mass of male isotope X natural abundance of boys) + (mass of female isotope X natural abundance of girls)

APM = (_______________ X ___________) + (__________ X ________)

APM = ________People Mass Units

New Jersey State Core Curriculum Standards

5.1, 5.2, 5.3, 5.4, 5.7