1, 2, 3: Hybrid Dimensions

Sometimes the obvious is the most difficult to see. Even after teaching for four decades, there is still something to learn from students. What did I recently learn? Check out my post. 

Surprising Shrinking Styrofoam Stick: Using the Gas Laws to Get a Square Peg into a Round Hole

Polystyrene foam sticks with a square or rectangular profile will not fit into a round target hole (e.g., the opening of a soda bottle) at room temperature. However, they do contract sufficiently in contact with liquid nitrogen to fit into the hole and produce a simple demonstration of Charles’s Law. Many other polymer foams do not shrink under these conditions, but still provide opportunities to discuss and explore their structure and chemistry.

Will a Watched Pot Ever Boil? A Simple, but Effective, Chemistry Lab: Constructing a Heating Curve of Water

This lab guides students through taking data and constructing their own heating curve for water. It requires no special equipment, is low prep, is safe, and can even be done at home for homeschool or distance learning. Even though the lab activity itself is relatively simple and straightforward, the concepts still engage students in higher level thinking and gives them important practice with laboratory techniques and forming hypotheses.

Chemistry Topics

acids/bases applications of chemistry aqueous solution chemistry Atomic Properties / Structure conductivity consumer chemistry Demonstrations density electrochemistry electrolysis equilibrium Food Science gases General Chemistry kinetics Laboratory Instruction liquids magnetic properties metals noncovalent interactions Outreach Oxidation / Reduction oxidation/reduction Phases / Phase Transitions / Diagrams Physical Chemistry physical properties precipitation/solubility Public Understanding reactions solids stoichiometry thermodynamics