Chemical Reactions is a topic that unites a number of skills from formula writing, balancing equations, predicting products and solubility to name a few. On January 13th, 2022, Sarah English shared her unit covering chemical reactions in this ChemBasics Talk. You can view a recording of her presentation and access materials she has suggested.
Did you know that sand can be converted into a mixture of gases that spontaneously ignites in air? The procedures involved are relatively simple to perform, spectacular to observe, and relate to a rich assortment of chemical principles.
Inspired by a recent article in the Journal of Chemical Education, Tom Kuntzleman attempted to extract lithium from a coin battery, and to use the extracted lithium to produce a pink flame.
Michael Jansen reflects on a very common empirical formula lab that asks students to determine the empirical formula of MgxOy. He then explains how he continues to use it as a "successful failure", how he demonstrates an alternate procedure and leads his students to an important lesson.
A lab practical with an escape room story turned out to be a great final exam.
Beautiful, metallic mirrors of copper or silver can easily be formed in test tubes. Simply add the appropriate metal salt to a test tube, and heat! These reactions should be performed in a fume hood.
Chad Husting shares a microscale Reactions Lab and outlines his goals and plans for labs in his classroom as he prepares for next school year.
The authors revisit "flattening the curve" demonstrations published during 2020 to see how they could represent the impact of vaccinations on the COVID 19 battlefront. These demonstrations do not demonstrate the mechanisms of vaccines themselves, but are rather analogies to their potential effect on a population. In these analogies, gas production still represents illness, but this time people are represented by objects added to the solutions which either enable gas production (unvaccinated individuals) or do not enable gas production (vaccinated individuals). These simple experiments are best used as stand-alone demonstrations, and links to videos are included in this writeup.
The Types of Chemical Reactions Lab is a favorite for many teachers and students. Chemistry comes to life as students record observations. This virtual version by no means replaces the students physically conducting the reactions themselves but during these times this activity can be used to supplement the teaching of chemical reactions.
Many teachers have students draw models and diagrams to help them illustrate how matter behaves. Teachers can uncover and address possible misconceptions quickly using this strategy. The author describes how to create interactive particle diagram activities that are easy for students to use online. This strategy is applicable to almost any particle diagram and should be useful for teachers during virtual lessons.