What's the difference between ionic and covalent bonds?

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First, let's think about what atoms even bond together. The 'aim' for every atom is to get a full outer shell of electrons, that means two if it's the first shell or eight if it's any other. Ionic and covalent bonds are just two ways in which atoms can work together to achieve this. For ionic, one atom which has a small number of extra electrons on it's outer shell, gives one or two electrons to a different atom which is missing one or two on it's outer shell. Since electrons have a negative charge, this leaves the first positively charged and the second negative, so they attract to eachother forming an electrostatic bond. In a covalent bond, two atoms with just less than 8 electrons 'agree' to share a few electrons in order to increase their overall number of electrons. These shared electrons are attracted to the neclei of both atoms, leaving the atoms bonded together

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