Using an iPad simulation and an online Java applet to help students understand Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution curves

There are occasionally discussions amongst educators about the efficacy of using technology in the classroom. Does it really make a difference? One train of thought is looking at the use of technology through the SAMR lens. Is the technology simply a Substitution? Or does it Augment the learning compared to previous methods of learning the same material. Maybe the use of technology Modifies the learning tasks. Or will the technology actually Redefine the learning by allowing the student to interact with knowledge in a way that is impossible without this technology. With this in mind, I set about to use an iPad app and an online simulation to introduce my IB Chemistry students to the concept of Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution curves. I'm not sure exactly where it fits on the SAMR continuum, but without the simulations I could only show my students the graphical representation of the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution curve. By using the simulations, I am attempting to help my students develope a deeper understanding of them.

Summer PD for Teachers

With spring just around the corner and warmer weather approaching, I find that I’m in active summer preparation mode.  This is the time of year when I’m trying to plan for the perfect summer balance between professional development and relaxation – both professional growth experiences in my

"Instant" Feedback

At my school in Michigan, the second semester just started this week. And, since all chemistry classes (except for IB Chemistry) are semester courses, I have new students and different preps.

App review – Cymbal by

In my high school chemistry classes, I stress the use of units and the use of written chemical formulas to be represented properly.  It is important to me that when a student expresses the formula of a chemical either in their data or in a balanced equation that they represent it correctly.

New Year, New Format

Happy New Year! For many, the beginning of a new year involves creating resolutions. And, hopefully not quitting them! Something I have resolved to do is modify the presentation and submission of lab reports.

Utilizing Google Forms For Feedback and Data Gathering for Instructional Videos in a Blended Classroom

In my previous post, I shared the general formatting of the videos I create for my IB Chemistry course within which I utilize the flipped model. Within that blog post, I mentioned that I use Google Forms to collect data about the videos, and I'd like to offer some thoughts on this as a tool with many uses.