Chemguide: Support for CIE A level Chemistry
Learning outcome 10.1(a)
This statement wants you to be able to describe the reactions between the Group 2 elements and oxygen, water and dilute acids.
Before you go on, you should find and read the statements in your copy of the syllabus.
Reactions with oxygen
You will find these discussed on the page reactions of the group 2 elements with air or oxygen.
That page includes more information than you need.
Important update September 2014: CIE have been asking multi-choice questions (most recently in June 2014 Paper 12 Q12 and Paper 13 Q19) about what colour flame Group 2 metals burn with. The choices included (amongst others) green or white for barium, and red or white for strontium.
If you have read my Chemguide page about this, you will know that I describe both of these flames as white with some coloured tinges. In other words both "white" and a colour are parts of the description of the flame. I see these questions as being invalid, and impossible to answer for anyone who has actually seen these metals burning rather than reading about them.
For CIE exam purposes, you must therefore choose the flame test colour for burning the metals calcium (red), strontium (red) and barium (green). There is obviously no problem with magnesium (white)!
Reactions with water
You will find these discussed on the page reactions of the group 2 elements with water.
For this statement, all you need to know are the descriptions - particularly for magnesium and calcium, which seem to be what are mainly asked in exams. The reactions for strontium and barium will look similar to calcium, but with faster reactions.
The explanations will come later in statement 10.1(d).
Reactions with dilute acids
You will find these discussed on the page reactions of the group 2 elements with acids.
You can ignore the references to beryllium, especially with nitric acid. You can also ignore references to anything other than dilute acids.
© Jim Clark 2012 (last modified September 2014)