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    Editorial | November 2019 Building Connections

    In the November editorial, AACT Governing Board DivCHED Representative Michael Mury highlights the importance of building connections as a teacher. He shares information about opportunities for educators to grow their professional network, locally and nationally, and also offers suggestions for how to get involved.

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    Nuts & Bolts | November 2019 Drawing Exit Tickets: A New Way to Formatively Assess

    The author uses a modified version of traditional exit tickets as a useful strategy to formatively assess student understanding at the end of the lesson. Her students are asked to summarize what they have learned by creating drawings. She shares that recent research has shown that drawing can be more effective than writing as a tool for remembering concepts. Read this article to see how you can use this strategy in your own classroom!

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    Nuts & Bolts | November 2019 Developing the Skill of Modeling to Reinforce Complex Topics in Chemistry

    In this article, the author explains the progression of skill development in particulate modeling in the chemistry classroom to help students better understand complex chemistry.

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    In My Element | November 2019 Life Lessons: Becoming a Teacher

    This article tells the unique story of a second-career teacher and her path to the high school chemistry classroom. Her first year as a teacher tested the perseverance of both her and her colleagues, as their school was lost in a Northern California wildfire. In the article, she shares thoughts about the lessons she’s learned about her role as an educator and the admiration she has gained for her amazing students, colleagues, and community.

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    Chemistry Fun | November 2019 Organizing the Periodic Table

    In this activity, students are challenged to organize elements into the shape of the periodic table based on trends in data. Students are given a set of cards, each card representing an element, and containing five data points for consideration. The data that students will analyze includes atomic mass, atomic radius, melting point, density and electronegativity.

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    Resource Feature | November 2019 Navigating the Periodic Table Guided by Nested Russian Dolls

    The authors describe a lesson they developed collaboratively to teach elementary students about the structure and shape of periodic table using a set of Russian “nesting dolls.” Building on that understanding, they teach students how to navigate the periodic table, identify specific elements by atomic number, analyze several element samples, and determine the identity of a mystery material.

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    Resource Feature | November 2019 Part 2: Teaching Earth Chemistry

    The second in a series of articles, the author focuses on using a phenomenon-based approach to investigate how density effects the chemical compositions of the two types of crust on the surface of the earth. He also demonstrates how the entire earth is arranged by density from the core to the top of the atmosphere — expanding the potential applications of density concepts beyond the lab.

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    Classroom Commentary | November 2019 AP or IB: What’s the Difference?

    The author is frequently asked questions about IB and AP chemistry, including, What's the difference? Isn't one chemistry course pretty much like any other? Based on his experiences, he provides a brief overview of the AP and IB Chemistry programs, and outlines some similarities and differences between the curriculums, laboratory experiences, and end-of-course exams.

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    Editorial | September 2019 Fresh Start

    AACT President Heather Weck shares her enthusiasm for a fresh start this new school year! She shares exciting updates and new content from AACT, and points teachers to some valuable teaching resources to consider as they begin a new year with students.

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    In My Element | September 2019 Embracing My Teaching Style

    The author shares about her recent career transition to becoming a chemistry teacher, and reflects on the challenges and successes she experienced during her first year in the classroom.

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    Classroom Commentary | September 2019 It’s Elementary: We all Teach Chemistry!

    In this article, the author affirms that elementary science teachers are chemistry teachers. She offers examples for connecting chemistry to space science, specifically using NASA resources, as well as examples for identifying other chemistry content connections in a science curriculum.

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    Chemistry Fun | September 2019 NCW ChemCatcher: Marvelous Metals

    In celebration of National Chemistry Week 2019, ACS has created a ChemCatcher for students to enjoy.

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    Simulation | September 2019 Preparing Solutions

    In this simulation, students will complete a calculation in order to determine either the molarity of solution, volume of solution, or mass of solute needed. Additionally the associated particle diagram for the solution will be displayed to help students better visualize the solution at the particulate level. Finally, students will gain familiarity with the proper lab techniques for preparing a solution as they are lead through a step-by-step animated process demonstrating this procedure.

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    Classroom Commentary | September 2019 Strategies for Fostering Community in High School Chemistry Classrooms

    In this article, the author discusses how developing a strong classroom community can help students persevere in the face of challenging chemistry content. The author shares how she has developed a system for fostering individual student growth while developing strong classroom culture over time.

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    Nuts & Bolts | September 2019 Tips for Surviving and Thriving in Your First Years as a Chemistry Teacher

    This article provides tips for finding success as a new chemistry teacher. Tips include helpful organizational advice and lab logistics for teachers who are navigating their first few years of teaching.

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    Classroom Commentary | September 2019 Using the Challenge Cycle to Facilitate Learning

    In this article, the author shares about her use of the Challenge Cycle in combination with the Middle School Chemistry curriculum, developed by ACS. The Challenge Cycle moves the responsibility for learning from teacher to student, and facilitates active learning as it serves as a guide for thinking and communicating.

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    Resource Feature | September 2019 Part 1: Teaching Earth Chemistry

    In this article, the author shares some introductory information as well reasons for teachers to integrate the chemistry of the earth in their chemistry curriculum. This article is the first in a series of articles on earth chemistry, and discusses building the content, making connections with existing chemistry content, and seeing examples of the relevance of the subject.

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    Nuts & Bolts | September 2019 Systems-Thinking in the Chemistry Classroom

    Recent critiques of chemistry curricula have pointed toward an overly reductionist approach to teaching and learning about the central science. Advocates of curriculum changes point out that many schools and textbooks fail to help students see chemistry’s impacts within larger and interconnected systems. A systems-thinking approach to chemistry curriculum development and implementation may help both students and teachers conceive and appreciate these complex relationships. Two tools that can help teachers design and implement a systems-approach to chemical education include Science Literacy Maps and Concept Maps.

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    In My Element | May 2019 The Chemistry of Opportunity: From the Commode to the Conant Award

    This article discusses the author’s background and experiences that led to his becoming a high school chemistry teacher and the 2018 recipient of the ACS James Bryant Conant Award in High School Chemistry Teaching.

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    Classroom Commentary | May 2019 Hands-On Science for K-8 Students

    This article describes outreach efforts to bring hands-on science experiments to K-8 classes. The author shares her experience involving college students in these efforts, and provides examples of some experiments that were memorable with young students.

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    Editorial | May 2019 Thank You for an Inspiring Year

    Sherri Rukes reflects on her past year as AACT president. She highlights some of the great progress made by AACT during the 2018-19 school year, and recognizes the important contributions of many valuable stakeholders.

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    Nuts & Bolts | May 2019 Addressing Scientific Literacy through a Demonstration

    A chemical demonstration can be repeatedly utilized in a curricular unit to bolster scientific literacy. A series of classroom activities in a chemistry classroom is presented to illustrate the demonstration's usefulness as a central and ongoing instructional strategy.

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    Tech Tips | May 2019 Edpuzzle: A Video Formative Assessment Tool

    In this article, the author discusses the use of video media to enhance teaching and learning through the use of the Edpuzzle platform. He shares his thoughts about the many ways that using video media can increase student accountability and engagement, while providing more data about student achievement throughout the lesson. Edpuzzle can be a helpful tool to formatively assess student understanding, identify misconceptions, and drive instruction.

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    Chemistry Fun | May 2019 Lucky Seven

    In this activity, students will use the periodic table and the clues provided to identify element names. Students will then attempt to find the element names that are hidden in the puzzle.

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    Resource Feature | May 2019 Modeling Polarity

    In this article, the authors share about two kinesthetic-based activities used to successfully help students develop an understanding of polarity. The first activity focuses on conceptualizing the polarity of a bond, and the second activity allows them to apply that knowledge to determine the polarity of a molecule.