Classroom Resources: Chemistry Basics


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1 – 25 of 45 Classroom Resources

  • Elements, History, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, Identifying an Unknown, Ionic Bonding, Naming Compounds | High School

    Lesson Plan: Joseph Priestley, Discoverer of Oxygen

    In this lesson, students will read an article to learn about the discovery and identification of gases, specifically oxygen by Joseph Priestley. There are a series of activities to help promote literacy in the science classroom related to the reading. This lesson could be easily used as plans for a substitute teacher, as most of the activities are self-guided.

  • Identifying an Unknown, Observations, Physical Change, Physical Properties, Chemical Change, Chemical Properties, Solubility, Precipitate, Indicators | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Using Qualitative Analysis to Identify Household Compounds

    In this lab, students will be introduced to common laboratory techniques, safety procedures, lab reagents, and terminology, all while identifying unknown household substances. Students will learn how to use qualitative analysis techniques as a systematic way to identify unknown materials. As part of this process, they will practice careful observation and documentation, as well as identifying relevant physical and chemical properties and changes, including solubility, color change, gas formation, and precipitation of solids.

  • Emission Spectrum, Atomic Spectra, Electrons, Atomic Theory, Emission Spectrum, Electromagnetic Spectrum, Identifying an Unknown | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Emissions of Light

    In this lab, students will examine three different ways to excite electrons to produce visible light found in the electromagnetic spectrum. The students will then see that this visible light has a specific color, wavelength, and frequency. They will use their knowledge of the speed of light and plank's equation to examine the energy involved in the emission of light. Finally, the students will then apply their knowledge of the emission spectrum to how the composition of stars is determined.

  • Identifying an Unknown, Experimental Design, Scientific Method, Chemical Change, Net Ionic Equation, Precipitate, Solubility, Solubility Rules, Balancing Equations, Predicting Products, Chemical Change | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Mislabeled Mess!

    In this lab, students will identify 3 unknown acids by using the solubility rules. They will be given a list of materials and will design their own procedures for identifying the unknowns. For each combination of reactants, they will predict whether a product forms and, if it does, write complete and net ionic equations for those reactions.

  • pH, Indicators, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, Identifying an Unknown | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Pigment pH Puzzles

    In this lab, students will use their scientific detective skills to determine the identity of pigments used in various types of pH test strips based on how they each interact with several solutions of different pH values.

  • Identifying an Unknown, Experimental Design, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, Observations, Polyatomic Ions, Chemical Change, Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding, Solubility | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Determining the Composition of Bridge Straw Stalactites

    In this lab, students will investigate “straws” that hang from a local bridge, and then determine various tests that can help to determine their chemical composition. Evaluating both the test results, as well as given information students will then make a claim about the composition, while providing evidence and supporting it with reasoning.

  • Solubility, Solute & Solvent, Precipitate, Mixtures, Error Analysis, Chemical Change, Physical Change, Observations, Identifying an Unknown, Graphing | High School, Middle School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. 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.

  • Molecular Structure, Lab Safety, Identifying an Unknown, Interdisciplinary | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: How Modern Instrumentation Revolutionized the Poison Game

    In this lesson, students are introduced to the world of Forensic Chemistry using the prologue of Deborah Blum’s The Poisoner’s Handbook. Discussion revolves around why murder by poison was so prevalent during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and why it is so rare today.  Students create their own Safety Data Sheet on a poison of choice, and learn about how mass spectroscopy has helped revolutionize the modern analysis of toxins. 

  • Titrations, Acid Base Reactions, Molarity, Identifying an Unknown | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: Investigating a Suspicious Drowning with Titrations

    In this lesson, students take on the role of a forensic chemist who is tasked with investigating a suspicious drowning incident. Students will conduct a series of titrations on an evidence sample of water collected from the victim's lungs as well as on several water samples from local water sources (lakes, rivers, wells, etc.) Based on their findings, they will determine where the victim actually drowned.

  • Density, Identifying an Unknown, Physical Properties | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: The Shattered Glass Mystery

    In this lesson, students will take on the role of a Forensic Scientist to help solve a hit and run investigation. They will learn how physical properties of matter, such as density and refractive index, can be used to help identify evidence samples such as glass.

  • Measurements, Error Analysis, Scientific Notation, Density, Identifying an Unknown | Middle School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: A Chemistry Calculation Challenge

    Students will apply their knowledge to solve four challenging chemistry-based calculation problems involving mass, volume, density, and number of molecules.

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum, Identifying an Unknown | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Color Matching Paint Video Questions

    In this activity, students will watch a video and answer related questions about how technology, specifically focusing on spectrophotometry, can be used for paint matching. During the video, students will learn how the spectrophotometer interacts with the spectrum of visible light in order to match or reproduce specific paint colors.

  • Balancing Equations, Classification of Reactions, Chemical Change, Identifying an Unknown, Molarity, Concentration | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: An Environmental Impact Study

    In this lab, students will test a water sample which comes from a local zoo, where, it is reported that many bird eggs are not hatching. Students will test the water for the presence of multiple ions. Once the type of ion in the water is determined, students will write balanced equations to illustrate their findings. Students will also conduct a serial dilution to determine the concentration, or molarity, of the ion in the water sample. This molarity will be compared to known values to determine if the materials in the water are at an unhealthy level.

  • Density, Identifying an Unknown, Measurements | Elementary School, Middle School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Demonstration: Household Densities

    In this demonstration, students will make predictions about various household materials and whether or not each will sink or float when placed in water. Data will be collected and then used to calculate the density value of each item. Finally students will analyze the relationship between the density value and the observed outcome, and use their knowledge to identify unknown materials.

  • Percent Composition, Mole Concept, Identifying an Unknown, Emission Spectrum | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: Chemical Analysis of Martian Rocks

    In this lesson, students are challenged to analyze the spectral graphs obtained by the Curiosity Mars Rover. Based on their examination students will determine the component elements of each sample, as well as the relative abundance of each element. With this information the student will complete calculations to find the empirical formula and identify the composition of the unknown rock. Finally students will complete research to see if these rocks are actually like those on Earth.

  • Elements, Identifying an Unknown, Atomic Spectra, Emission Spectrum, Electromagnetic Spectrum, Emission Spectrum | Middle School, Elementary School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: Elements Are Out of This World

    In this lesson, students will learn about the elements that make up Earth’s atmosphere and lithosphere and then compare and contrast the information with the elements that compose various other astronomical objects.

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum, Atomic Spectra, Electrons, Identifying an Unknown | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: The Case of the Contaminated Well

    In this lab, students will observe the colors produced when different metal salt solutions are heated in a flame. Students will take on the role of a forensic investigator and use their results to help them determine if collected evidence was contaminated.

  • Calorimetry, Specific Heat, Identifying an Unknown | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: The Search for a Hit and Run Suspect

    In this lab, students will determine the specific heat capacity of multiple unknown metal samples through collecting data and completing calorimetric calculations. Students will take on the role of a forensic investigator and use their results to help them determine if a suspect’s vehicle was potentially involved in a hit and run incident.

  • Dimensional Analysis, Mole Concept, Measurements, Density, Identifying an Unknown, Molar Mass | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Chemistry Composition Challenge

    In this inquiry based lab, students will design a method to solve three chemistry problems involving moles, molecules, and density.

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum, Identifying an Unknown | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Color Matching Paint Video

    This video explains how technology, specifically focusing on spectrophotometry, can be used for paint matching. Students will learn how the spectrophotometer interacts with the spectrum of visible light in order to match or reproduce specific paint colors.

  • Indicators, Identifying an Unknown | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Indicators of Acids and Bases

    In this lab, students will use various indicators to identify unknown (clear) solutions as acidic, basic, or neutral.

  • Atomic Spectra, Emission Spectrum, Emission Spectrum, Electromagnetic Spectrum, Interdisciplinary, Identifying an Unknown | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Spectral Detective

    In this lab, students will use a spectroscope to view the atomic spectra of various unknown elements. Using their collected data in combination with known atomic spectra, they will identify the chemical elements.

  • Periodic Table, History, Identifying an Unknown | Elementary School, Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Cadmium Video

    In this video, Sam Kean tells stories about cadmium.

  • Periodic Table, History, Identifying an Unknown | Elementary School, Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Arsenic Video

    In this video, Sam Kean tells stories about arsenic, a deadly element that was once referred to as the "Inheritance Powder".

  • 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

    Access is an AACT member benefit. 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.

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