How do the valence electron configurations of the alkali metals compare with each other?
The valance electron configuration is the same in each at ns1 where n = the period number.
transition elements are not as reactive as alkali metals or alkaline earth metals.. this is so because of the valence electronic configurations. alkali metals have ns1 configurations which have easy chances of loosing electrons so as to gain the stable state. Attaining a stable state is the law of nature. hence to attain it they have to redily donate electron. this is not so easily possible for the transition elements..
The key to this answer is the phrase "valence electrons". Alkali metals are in the first column of the periodic table and include elements such as Lithium, Sodium and Potassium. These elements typically lose ONE electron when they participate in a chemical reaction, therefore they have ONE valence electron.