Alcohols react with active metals e.g. Na,
Question:

Alcohols react with active metals e.g. Na, K etc. to give corresponding alkoxides.

Write down the decreasing order of reactivity of sodium metal towards primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols

Solution:

The decreasing order of reactivity of sodium metal towards alcohols: Primary alcohols > secondary alcohols > tertiary alcohols

The reactivity of sodium metal towards tertiary alcohols is lowest mainly due to two reasons. First, steric hindrance of the alkyl groups. Second, an increase in the electron density on an Oxygen atom in the hydroxyl bond.