How does the reactivity of group 2 elements change down the group, and what is the cause of this trend?

Each row on the periodic table represents a new energy level/electron shell. So as you go down the group there are more energy levels, increasing the atomic radius. The first electron to react will be on the outer shell.

The reactivity increases down the group from Mg to Ba. This is because the further away an electron is from the nucleus, the weaker its attraction and the more likely it is to react with another atom. More energy levels also means there is more nuclear ‘shielding’ from other electrons, further weakening the outer electrons’ attraction to the nuclei.

Ruth R. GCSE Biology tutor, A Level Biology tutor, GCSE Chemistry tut...

1 year ago

Answered by Ruth, an A Level Chemistry tutor with MyTutor

Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist


£22 /hr

Emma R.

Degree: Chemistry (Masters) - Durham University

Subjects offered:Chemistry, Maths+ 1 more


“I find tutoring both fun and incredibly rewarding and look forward to working with my students to fulfil their potential and achieve their target grades. ”

£26 /hr

Dylan P.

Degree: Chemical Engineering (Masters) - Birmingham University

Subjects offered:Chemistry, Science+ 3 more

-Personal Statements-

“I am a third-year student at the University of Birmingham studying my passion, Chemical Engineering. I hope to be able to inspire a similar passion in the sciences and mathematics to help you master the concepts. I am friendly and pat...”

£24 /hr

Joshua T.

Degree: Chemistry PhD (Doctorate) - Bristol University

Subjects offered:Chemistry, Physics


“Chemistry PhD student at the University of Bristol, with a masters degree in chemistry from the University of Oxford. Available to teach Chemistry and Physics”

About the author

£20 /hr

Ruth R.

Degree: Biochemistry (Bachelors) - Bath University

Subjects offered:Chemistry, Maths+ 1 more


“About me: I am a second year Biochemsitry student at the University of Bath. I have successful one-to-onetutoring experience in the Sciences and Maths, as well as spending some time volunteering as a Chemistry teacher in Tanzania. I ...”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Other A Level Chemistry questions

Identify the dehydration product or products of a) ethanol, b) button-2-ol

What is a buffer and what do you need to make one?

Without a catalyst, an alkene will react with bromine while benzene will not. Why is this?

What is a dynamic equilibrium?

View A Level Chemistry tutors

We use cookies to improve your site experience. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss