Classroom Resources: Chemistry Basics
1 – 25 of 44 Classroom Resources
Alpha/Beta/Gamma Decay, Radioactive Isotopes, Graphing | High School
Activity: The Nuclear Decay of Uranium
In this activity, students will model the Uranium decay series through nuclear equations, graphing, and particulate diagrams.
Solutions, Concentration, Solubility, Molarity, Graphing | High School
Activity: Concentration and Solubility
In this activity, students will use news articles and EPA publications to compare Federal drinking water regulations to the concentrations found in Flint, Michigan. Students are introduced to the unit parts per billion (ppb) and compare it both conceptually and mathematically to molarity. As a group, students use data to compare the solubility of various lead salts and perform solubility calculations.
Measurements, Graphing, Interdisciplinary | High School
Activity: Modeling Algae Growth
In this activity, students will read a ChemMatters article about the science of algal blooms to learn how the blooms affect ecosystems. While developing their understanding, students will create a mathematical model to predict algal growth.
Concentration, Precipitate, Molarity, Molality, Conductivity, Colligative Properties, Boiling Point Elevation, Freezing Point Depression, Distillation, Culminating Project, Graphing, Accuracy, Error Analysis, Interdisciplinary, Mixtures, pH, Buffers, Boiling Point, Freezing Point, Phase Changes | High School
Lesson Plan: Investigating Sea Water
In this lesson, students will consider their water footprint and means to obtain fresh water from seawater using a solar still. To understand the differences between fresh water and seawater, students will determine the composition of artificial seawater by using qualitative analysis to test for different ions in solution and calculate the molarity of different salts used in the recipe. Students will observe the effects of solutes in aqueous solutions by measuring conductivity and the freezing and boiling points of seawater and deionized water and determine total dissolved solids. In addition, students explore the buffering ability of seawater and the effect of carbon dioxide on its pH.
Renewable Energy, Heat, Temperature, Specific Heat, Interdisciplinary, Graphing | Middle School, High School
Lesson Plan: Solar Cookers
In this lesson, students will learn about the use of alternative cooking fuels that could replace burning wood, coal, or other smoke-producing materials to heat and cook food in developing nations, focusing on solar cookers. They will watch a video and read an article that provide a general overview of the need for alternative fuels. Then, in small groups, students will research, design, build, and test a solar cooker to determine if it is an effective method of cooking food in a developing nation. They will give a presentation to the class on their design, test results, and any improvements they would make to their initial design, and they will answer some reflection questions about the solar cookers made by their class and their role in the group project.
Combustion, Chemical Change, Balancing Equations, Reaction Rate, Conservation of Mass, Conservation of Matter, Stoichiometry, Limiting Reactant, Chemical Change, Conservation of Matter, Conservation of Mass, Graphing, Error Analysis, Accuracy, Observations, Inferences, Interdisciplinary, Reaction Rate, Catalysts, Measurements, Mole Concept | High School
Lesson Plan: Clean Air Chemistry
In this lesson, students will learn about air pollution and some steps toward mitigating it. First, they will burn a candle and measure its mass and the concentration of CO2 over time. Students will discuss which data set they have more confidence in and why and then use stoichiometry to predict outcomes. Next, students explore incomplete combustion in a model-based worksheet that shows how a lack of O2 in the burning of fuels can produce air pollution. Students work together to interpret the models, define terms, and draw conclusions. Lastly, students work in groups using Lego models to illustrate how a catalytic converter works. They race “Nature” against catalysts “Palladium,” “Platinum,” and “Rhodium” to see what breaks down air pollution molecules fastest.
Density, Graphing | High School
Lab: You Are My Density
In this lab, students will collect and plot both volume and mass data in order to better understand density as a constant by using the line of best fit. They will then model and analyze a perplexing situation involving density to consider the application of density in everyday life.
Colligative Properties, Boiling Point Elevation, Freezing Point Depression, Concentration, Solute & Solvent, Boiling Point, Freezing Point, Phase Changes, Molecular Motion, Graphing, Physical Properties, Heat, Temperature | Middle School, High School
Activity: Simulation Activity: The Effect of Solutes on Boiling and Freezing Point
In this activity, students will use a colligative properties simulation to investigate the effects of different solutes, and different amounts of those solutes, on the boiling point and freezing point of a solution. Students will see particle-level animations of boiling and freezing with different types and amounts of solutes, as well as graphical representations of the results of each trial.
Colligative Properties, Boiling Point Elevation, Freezing Point Depression, Concentration, Solute & Solvent, Boiling Point, Freezing Point, Phase Changes, Molecular Motion, Graphing, Physical Properties, Heat, Temperature | High School
Simulation: Colligative Properties
In this simulation, students will investigate the effects of different solutes, and different amounts of those solutes, on the boiling point and freezing point of a solution. Students will see particle-level animations of boiling and freezing with different types and amounts of solutes, as well as graphical representations of the results of each trial.
Graphing, Interdisciplinary | High School
Activity: Insect Investigators
In this activity, students will learn that insects can be used as a tool in a criminal investigation to predict the time of death of a person or an animal by a Forensic Entomologist. Students will analyze and graph multiple data sets related to the life cycle of a blow fly in order to better understand how the blow fly can be used as evidence in an investigation.
Interdisciplinary, Graphing | Middle School, High School
In this simulation, students will be introduced to good graphing techniques and how to interpret data presented in a graph. They are introduced to the TAILS acronym (Title, Axes, Intervals, Labels, Scale) to help them remember how to set up a graph and the concepts of line of best fit, positive and negative correlation, and interpolating and extrapolating. Then students complete a six-question quiz on these topics.
Graphing, Interdisciplinary | Middle School, High School
Activity: Simulation Activity: Graphing
In this activity, students will use a simulation to learn good graphing techniques, as well as how to interpret data presented in a graph. They will take a quiz in the simulation, and then have an opportunity to put their graphing skills to work and generate their own graph using sample data.
Heat, Temperature, Specific Heat, Law of Conservation of Energy, Enthalpy, Calorimetry, Exothermic & Endothermic, Balancing Equations, Chemical Change, Measurements, Mole Concept, Dimensional Analysis, Culminating Project, Interdisciplinary, Review, Graphing, Observations, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties | High School
Project: Handwarmer Design Challenge
In this project, students will use their knowledge of thermodynamics to design a handwarmer for a manufacturing company that can maintain a temperature of 30-40°C for at least 5 minutes and is designed for the average human hand. Students will create a final product after rounds of testing and an advertising poster that summarizes the results of their testing and promotes their design.
Establishing Equilibrium, Equilibrium Constants, Reaction Quotient, Graphing | High School
Activity: Shaking Dice to Model Equilibrium Principles
In this activity, students work together in small groups using a variety of multi-sided dice to model the dynamic character of a chemical equilibrium. Students will collect, share and analyze data in order to understand that the rate of a chemical reaction depends on the concentration of reactants (and products) as modelled by the different sided dice.
Scientific Method, Experimental Design, Observations, Introduction, Graphing | Middle School, High School
Lab: Applying the Scientific Method to Stain Removal
In this lab, students will explore the real scientific process by designing an experiment to solve a problem. Students will learn about basic lab equipment, safety, and the scientific process of trial and error while solving a common problem: What color of food coloring requires the most bleach to remove?
Experimental Design, Scientific Method, Graphing, Observations | Middle School, High School
Lab: Mentos and Soda Investigations
In this lab, students will design their own experiment in which they manipulate a variable that relates to Mentos and soda. Students will generate a testable question, design an experiment, collect and analyze the data and present their findings.
Solubility, Solute & Solvent, Precipitate, Mixtures, Error Analysis, Chemical Change, Physical Change, Observations, Identifying an Unknown, Graphing | Middle School, High School
Lab: Chemicals, Chromatography, and Crime!
In this lab, students will test “evidence” that has been collected from a crime scene. In order to determine if the victim was poisoned, students will perform a solubility and crystallization test on an unknown powder. Then, students will attempt to identify the culprit by using paper chromatography to analyze the lipstick from the potential criminals.
Concentration, Graphing, Electromagnetic Spectrum | High School
Lesson Plan: Determining the Time of Death
In this lesson, students will perform a flame test on a sample of vitreous humor (liquid found in the eyeball) in a forensic investigation. They will determine which element from the sample is used to determine the time of death. Then they will engineer a simple spectrophotometer to quantify that element. Evaluating a fake sample of vitreous humor in their spectrophotometer will help them determine the time of death for a hypothetical cadaver.
Graphing, Scientific Method, Experimental Design | Elementary School, Middle School
Activity: Graphing Glow-in-the-Dark Paint
In this activity, students will have the opportunity to review the scientific method, and analyze data from a scenario about glow-in-the-dark paint. Additionally, students with create a graph to help them to interpret data.
Radiation, Electromagnetic Spectrum, Heat, Temperature, Experimental Design, Graphing, Interdisciplinary | Middle School, High School
Lesson Plan: The Ozone Layer
In this lesson, students will develop an explanation for the consequences of ozone depletion on Earth by planning and carrying out an investigation. Students will use analysis and interpretation of data to develop a model to explain the cause and effect of Ozone depletion on the planet Earth.
Density, Physical Properties, Chemical Properties, Physical Change, Chemical Change, Graphing, Alloys | Middle School, High School
Lesson Plan: The Captivating Chemistry of Coins
In this lesson, students will develop a better understanding of physical and chemical properties of matter by comparing the composition of different pennies. This is done by determining the density of different pennies which will be compared to the density of different metals.
Limiting Reactant, Percent Yield, Stoichiometry, Balancing Equations, Net Ionic Equation, Concentration, Molarity, Precipitate, Solubility, Dimensional Analysis, Mole Concept, Observations, Graphing, Separating Mixtures, Identifying an Unknown | High School
Lab: White Lab
In this lab, students use molarity concepts to review limiting reactant concepts mathematically, conceptually, and graphically. They can then carry out a follow up investigation to identify an unknown using concepts learned in the first investigation.
Reaction Rate, Order of Reaction , Graphing | High School
Lab: Kinetic Approach to Water Flow
This lab uses the principles of chemical kinetics without using a chemical reaction. It’s an effective means to introduce the important relationship between concentration and time at an introductory level. Students will have the opportunity to analyze data and make important connections through graphing their data.
Half Lives, Graphing | High School
Lab: Twizzler Half-Life
In this lab, students will better understand the concept of half-lives.
Density, Measurements, Graphing, Experimental Design, Scientific Method, Physical Properties, Error Analysis, Significant Figures, Error Analysis | High School
Lab: Investigating the Density of an Irregular Solid Object
In this lab, students will use common laboratory equipment to devise a method to measure the density of several irregular objects. They will then create a formal laboratory report using both their own data and data from the entire class.
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