Classroom Resources: Molecules & Bonding

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  • Chemistry Basics, Physical Properties, Physical Change, Observations, Identifying an Unknown, Lab Safety, Molecular Shapes, Covalent Bonding, Ionic Bonding, Intermolecular Forces, Molecular Motion | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Animation: Physical Properties and Particle Interaction Animation

    This animation explores the relationship between physical properties and particle-level interactions. Particle diagrams of common household substances are used to illustrate that forces of attraction influence melting points. Similarly, particle diagrams of the same substances dissolved in water are used to compare their conductivity in solution. This animation was featured in the November 2023 issue of Chemistry Solutions. **This video has no audio**

  • Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, Chemical Change, Physical Change, Mixture, Chemical Structure, Chemical Change, Culminating Project | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: Analyze a Family Recipe

    In this project, students will select a family recipe, or a favorite recipe to investigate. They will analyze several of the ingredients in order learn more about the chemistry of each one, as well as their purpose in the recipe. Additionally, students will examine several ingredient interactions to learn more about the chemistry of cooking.

  • Heat, Physical Properties, Physical Change, Molecular Structure, Monomer, Polymers | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Ingenious Video 7: The World has a Receipt Problem

    The receipts you take home from the store – or stuff in your bag, or lose in your car -- employ a printing method that’s been around since the 1970s. Thermal printing involves heat-sensitive inks called leuco dyes that show up when they react with an acid developer embedded in the paper. Not only do these inks fade easily, but receipts that use them aren’t recyclable, and could even be dangerous to your health. Taking a cue from a failed experiment, scientists are developing a new kind of receipt paper that will use the same thermal printers without leuco dyes. Instead of acid developers, this paper is coated in reflective microspheres that collapse under heat, allowing regular ink underneath to show through.

  • Molecular Structure, Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Polymers, Molecular Structure , Functional Groups, Polymers | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Ingenious Video 6: Kill More Germs by Cleaning … Less?

    There’s clean, and then there’s CLEAN. Even if something looks clean, it might still be harboring microbes – many of them harmless, some of them definitely not. With most of the ways that we clean and disinfect — that is, kill germs — the clean doesn’t last as long as you might think. Disinfectants work by attacking bacterial membranes and viral protein coats, breaking them down so that those germs fall apart and die. But the germaphobes were always right: As soon as a disinfectant dries, and a surface is re-exposed, like if someone touches or (worse) sneezes on it, it needs be disinfected all over again. The next generation of cleaning products, however, add a trick: they lay down an incredibly thin polymer layer that keeps the germ-killing ingredients in place and effective for 24 hours at a time.

  • Molecular Structure, Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Molecular Structure , Combustion | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Ingenious Video 5: Making Shipping Greener with Hairy Ships

    The “fouling” of boats — when aquatic animals like barnacles and tubeworms attach to hulls — has been a nuisance for as long as we’ve been sailing the seas. Fouling messes up a vessel’s streamlined shape, decreasing its speed, maneuverability, and in modern times, its fuel-efficiency. Fouling spikes the carbon footprint of the shipping industry, already greater than that of most countries. For centuries, people used copper coatings to prevent fouling. Modern solutions use toxic chemical paints that pollute the water, kill marine life, and contribute to the degradation of our oceans when they wear off. A new approach is trying to work with nature instead of against it. Taking inspiration from the Salvinia plant, which is covered in tiny hair-like structures that make it basically waterproof, scientists are developing a stick-on silicone coating for ships that prevents animal hitchhikers from getting a foothold.

  • Polymers, Molecular Structure, Molecular Structure , Polymers, Solubility | High School

    Video: Ingenious Video 4: How Science Is Fixing Recycling's Grossest Problem

    Polypropylene recycling has a problem: It stinks. Food and other residues are almost impossible to remove entirely from polypropylene, a.k.a the number “5” plastic of grocery-store fame. Those residues – anything from yogurt to garlic, from fish oil to baby food – not only stick to polypropylene, they degrade there and start to smell even worse! Current polypropylene recycling techniques are more down-cycling than re-cycling. Unless you break down its molecules through a highly energy-intensive refining process, the material can only get a second life as a black trash can or an underground pipe – wherever its smell doesn’t matter. But a new technique, called dissolution recycling, is changing all that. Dissolution recycling uses a special hydrocarbon polymer solvent under finely controlled conditions of temperature and pressure to eliminate ALL of the contaminants embedded in the plastic.

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum, Molecular Structure, Chemical Bond, Molecular Structure | High School

    Video: Ingenious Video 2: What Birds Know About Color that You Don't

    We’ve been using pigments and dyes for thousands of years, but they’re not the whole story when it comes to making color. “Structural” color occurs when tiny nanostructures interact with light waves, amplifying certain colors and canceling others. From brilliant bird feathers to butterfly wings, mole hairs to octopus skin, structural color is everywhere in the natural world. Researchers have tried for years to harness this incredible natural phenomenon in a useful way. Because these colors are so small and complex, and therefore hard to copy, their efforts have met with little success. But novel research using a computer model based in repeated random sampling — a so-called “Monte Carlo” model — is showing promise. Using this approach, scientists have been able to mimic the gorgeous blue of the mountain bluebird in a thin film of reflective beads, leapfrogging millennia of evolution.

  • Molecular Structure, Molecular Formula, Measurements, Significant Figures, Molecular Structure , Saturated vs. Unsaturated | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: Discovering Chemical Elements in Food

    In this project, students will analyze nutrition labels of some of the foods and drinks that they recently consumed. They will identify which type of macromolecule (carbohydrates, lipids, proteins) is mainly supplied by the item and they will compare their consumption with the daily recommended intake for that type of macromolecule. Students will also investigate salt and added sugar as well as vitamins and minerals in the item. Finally, students will present their findings through short, spoken messages that are recorded and presented through a QR code. These can become a source of information for the school community at large upon completion of the project.

  • Physical Properties, Chemical Properties, Elements, Matter, Covalent Bonding, Ionic Bonding, Intermolecular Forces, Polymers | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: The Chemistry of Toys

    In this project, students will study the chemistry behind a toy or novelty item of their choosing. They will look at the parts that make up their item and determine what materials each part is made of; the types of atoms, molecules, and bonds present in those materials; and their physical and chemical properties.

  • Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Covalent Bonding, Lewis Structures, Molecular Geometry, Physical Properties | High School

    Simulation: Intermolecular Forces

    In this simulation, students will review the three major types of intermolecular forces and answer quiz questions using the relative strengths of these forces to compare different substances given their name, formula, and Lewis structure.

  • Introduction, Interdisciplinary, History, Heat, Renewable Energy, Polymers, Molecular Structure | Middle School, High School

    Video: Frontiers of Chemistry

    This video explores new scientific developments that were made possible by the application of fundamental chemistry concepts. Students will learn about exciting advances in science and technology focused on three main topics: Solar Cells, 3D Printing and Micro Machines.

  • Molecular Structure, Intermolecular Forces, Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding, Metallic Bonding, Polarity, Intramolecular Forces, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, Interdisciplinary, Culminating Project | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: Problem-Solving with Materials

    In this project, students will develop a presentation to explain how and why a specific material can solve a problem. The explanation will involve researching the properties of the material and how its properties are suited for solving a specific problem.

  • Culminating Project, Chemical Properties, Physical Properties, History, VSEPR Theory, Polymers, Covalent Bonding | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: The Evolution of Materials Science in Everyday Products

    In this project, students will be able to understand the progression of development of an everyday product and display their knowledge through a creative video. They will investigate the history and chemical composition of the product through the present day. The students will then suggest an innovation about how the product can be altered in the future to improve society.

  • Molecular Structure, Molecular Geometry, Polymers, Electronegativity, Heat, Temperature, Electricity | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: The Future of Paint Video

    This video explores the fascinating and innovative scientific advancements of paint. Students will learn how the molecular components in paint are helping to evolve in the world around them. Futuristic paint is capable of replacing light switches, conducting electricity, and regulating temperature amongst other things!

  • Covalent Bonding, Lewis Structures, VSEPR Theory, Electronegativity, Polarity, Atomic Radius, Valence Electrons | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Project: Molecular Modeling

    In this project, students will research a molecule selected from the teacher approved list, construct a three-dimensional model of the molecule, and present their research to the class in a 7-10 minute oral presentation.

  • Mixtures, Solute & Solvent, Intermolecular Forces, Intermolecular Forces, Molecular Formula, Molecular Structure, Polymers, Electromagnetic Spectrum | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: What is Paint? Video

    This video investigates the composition of paint, while analyzing the fundamental chemistry principles of its main components. Students will learn about the differences between three common paint types, water colors, oil-based and acrylic paint as well as the chemistry of each.

  • Electromagnetic Spectrum, Molecular Structure, Mixtures | Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: What are Pigments? Video

    This video discusses the chemistry of pigment molecules and how they are used to give paints their specific color. Students will learn about the importance of a pigment’s molecular structure, how they are physically suspended to create a paint color, as well as how they interact with light.

  • Periodic Table, Elements, History, Subatomic Particles, Atomic Mass, Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding | Middle School, High School

    Project: Exploring Elements

    In this project, students will select an element and then use to explore aspects of the element including its periodicity, electron configuration, history, and uses in industry.

  • Solubility, Solute & Solvent, Mixtures, Intermolecular Forces, Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Molecular Geometry | Elementary School, Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Animation: Solubility Animation

    This animation explores how ionic and molecular compounds dissolve (or don’t) in water. Students will see that if an ionic compound such as salt dissolves, the ions dissociate, whereas the molecules in a molecular compound such as sugar remain intact but are separated from one another by water molecules. They will also see that some ionic compounds such as chalk do not dissolve, and the cations and anions remain stuck together. **This video has no audio**

  • Molecular Structure, Molecular Geometry, History, Periodic Table, Molecular Structure | Elementary School, Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Video: Phosphorous Video

    In this video, Sam Kean tells the story of how phosphorus was at the center of the race to discover the structure of DNA.

  • Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding, Polarity, Molecular Formula | Elementary School, Middle School, High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Animation: Bonding Animation

    This animation explores how different chemical bonds form. Examples of ionic, covalent, and polar covalent bonds are animated, and then students are given a sample of compounds to predict the bonding types. **This video has no audio**

  • Molecular Formula, Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding, Molecular Geometry, Naming Compounds, Lewis Structures, Periodic Table, Valence Electrons, Lewis Dot Diagrams, Ions, Subatomic Particles | High School, Middle School

    Simulation: Ionic & Covalent Bonding

    In the September 2016 simulation, students investigate both ionic and covalent bonding. Students will have the opportunity to interact with many possible combinations of atoms and will be tasked with determining the type of bond and the number of atom needed to form each. Students will become familiar with the molecular formula, as well as the naming system for each type of bond and geometric shape, when applicable.

  • Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Molecular Motion, Intermolecular Forces, Molecular Motion, Physical Change, Physical Change | High School

    Simulation: Comparing Attractive Forces

    In the November 2014 issue, students explore the different attractive foreces between pairs of molecules by dragging the "star" image. In the accompanying activity, students investigate different types of intermolecular forces (London dispersion and dipole-dipole). In the analysis that follows the investigation, they relate IMFs (including hydrogen bonding) to physical properties (boiling point and solubility).

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