Based on periodic trends, which elements in Problem 1 (in their elemental form) would you expect to be good reducing agents?
Based on periodic trends, which elements would you expect to be good oxidizing agents?
A reducing agent (also called a reductant or reducer) is an element (such as calcium) or compound that loses (or "donates") an electron to another chemical species in a redox chemical reaction. Since the reducing agent is losing electrons, it is said to have been oxidized.
If any chemical is an electron donor (reducing agent), another must be an electron recipient (oxidizing agent).
A reducing agent is oxidized because it loses electrons in the redox reaction. Thus reducers are "oxidized" by oxidizers and oxidizers are "reduced" by reducers; reducers are by themselves reduced (have more electrons) and oxidizers...