Classroom Resources: Molecules & Bonding


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  • Intermolecular Forces, Polarity, Molecular Structure | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Investigating Water Resistance Through Fabric Identification

    In this lab, students will design a procedure to test and compare the water resistance ability of several unidentified fabric samples. Students will then attempt to identify each of the unknown fabric samples by analyzing the polarity of each molecular structure in combination with the data collected in their test.

  • Interdisciplinary, Physical Properties, Chemical Properties, Molecular Structure, Chemical Bond, Radiation | High School

    Lesson Plan: Chlorofluorocarbons and Ozone Depletion

    In this lesson, students will learn about the history of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and the harm they cause the ozone layer through an article reading. 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.

  • Ionic Bonding, Covalent Bonding, Naming Compounds, Molecular Structure, Molecular Structure , Functional Groups, Polyatomic Ions, History | High School

    Lesson Plan: The Development of Baking Powder

    In this lesson, students will learn about the chemistry behind baking powder through reading about its history and development over time. 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.

  • Alloys, Molecular Structure, Physical Properties | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lab: Chemistry of Art through Alloys and Metal Plating

    In this lab, students will learn about and experiment with the process of electroless chemical plating in order to create a piece of artwork made from a combination of copper, zinc-plated copper, and brass.

  • Molecular Structure, Covalent Bonding, Molecular Formula, Review, Atoms | Middle School, Elementary School

    Activity: Atom Catcher Game

    In this activity, students will make several different molecules out of four types of atoms: oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, and nitrogen in an online game. In order to be successful, the student must move a beaker on the screen to catch the correct type and number of atoms needed to form a particular molecule. Students can score points by making as many correct molecules as possible in a given amount of time.

  • 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.

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

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Ingenious: The World Has a Receipt Problem Video Questions

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video The World has a Receipt Problem from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates the process of thermal printing on receipts, and the limitations related to the paper that currently prints using leuco dyes. This heat-sensitive ink appears when it reacts with an acid developer embedded in the paper. Scientists are working to develop a new kind of thermal receipt paper, that can use the same printers, however it offers many additional benefits and potential uses.

  • Molecular Geometry, Molecular Structure, Lewis Structures | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: Investigating Real-World Applications of Molecular Geometry

    In this lesson, students use tools to predict the shapes of simple molecules and discuss factors that cause molecules to adopt certain shapes. These concepts are then applied to real-world examples of how geometry impacts the functions of important molecules.

  • 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.

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

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

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video, Kill More Germs by Cleaning… Less?, from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates the chemistry of cleaning. Unfortunately, clean doesn’t last as long as you might think—this video examines how disinfectants work and also how long they lasts. Scientists share about the next generation of cleaning products, that keeps the germ-killing ingredients in place and effective much longer.

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

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

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video, Making Shipping Greener with Hairy Ships, from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates the “fouling” of boats (when aquatic animals like barnacles and tubeworms attach to hulls), and the impact it has on fuel efficiency. Since fouling is a significant contributor to the carbon footprint, this video highlights how scientists were inspired by unique aquatic plants to develop a stick-on silicone coating for ships that prevents animal hitchhikers from getting a foothold.

  • Radiation, Molecular Structure, Polarity, Heat | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: Why Does Carbon Get Such a Bad Rap?

    In this lesson, students will use a climate change scenario to understand the role that polar bonds play in whether a molecule can be considered a greenhouse gas, while learning the particle nature of matter-energy interactions.

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

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Ingenious: How Science Is Fixing Recycling's Grossest Problem Video Questions

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video, How Science is Fixing Recycling’s Grossest Problem, from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates the stinky problems associated with polypropylene recycling. Current polypropylene recycling techniques are more down-cycling than re-cycling, but a new technique, called dissolution recycling, is changing all that.

  • 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.

  • Molecular Structure, Catalysts | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Ingenious: The Strange Chemistry Behind Why You Get Sick on Planes Video Questions

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video, The Strange Chemistry Behind Why You Get Sick on Planes, from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates the compound ozone and why it might be responsible for some of the discomforts associated with air travel.

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

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Ingenious: What Birds Know About Color that You Don't Video Questions

    In this activity, students will answer questions while watching the video, What Birds Know about Color that You Don’t, from the Ingenious series produced by the American Chemical Society. Each episode investigates a different topic related to how leading-edge chemistry is taking on the world’s most urgent issues to advance everyone’s quality of life and secure our shared future. This episode investigates structural color, its complexities as well as how it differs from pigments and dyes.

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

  • Molecular Structure, Introduction, Matter | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Real World Particle Diagramming

    In this activity, students illustrate everyday objects on the particulate level. To do this, students pick an object around the school (or their home) and then take a picture of the object, research its composition, and draw a particle diagram representation of the object. This helps students to gain confidence in representing matter at a particulate level by starting with familiar objects.

  • Molecular Structure, Chemical Properties | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Lesson Plan: The Chemistry of Vaccines

    In this lesson, students will read the article, Can a Vaccine End the Pandemic? by Wynne Parry from the December 2020 edition of ChemMatters magazine. Students will answer questions based on the content of the article and also have the opportunity to do additional research. Finally, they will create a podcast discussing the chemistry of vaccines.

  • 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. 

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

    Lab: The Chemistry of Hand Sanitizer and Soap

    In this lab, students will model the interaction between hand sanitizer particles and virus particles, as well as between soap particles and virus particles. They will apply their understanding of molecular structure and intermolecular forces to analyze their observations and behavior of the particles, in order to gain a better understanding of how soaps and sanitizers work.

  • Molecular Structure, Intermolecular Forces, Measurements, SI Units | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Designing an Effective Respiratory Cloth Mask

    In this activity students will use unit conversion to help compare sizes of molecules, viruses, and droplets and then use them to interpret graphical data. They will then use their findings to design a cloth mask that helps protect its wearer against infection by SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19.

  • Molecular Structure , Naming Compounds, Molecular Structure | High School

    Access is an AACT member benefit. Activity: Naming Alkanes

    In this activity, students will learn how to name simple organic structures including alkanes, branched alkanes and haloalkanes.

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