Ben Meacham decided to alter his approach to teaching about enthalpy and focus on getting students to first develop the mathematical model for enthalpy of solution so they could eventually apply it to make predictions for different solutes being dissolved. In this blog post he shares the process he used with his class.
The demonstration where CO2 is generated and used to snuff out a candle in an aquarium or other container is well known. This article describes a dramatic variation on these demonstrations that allows for discussion of such topics as the ideal gas law, densities of different gases, gas density changes with temperature, miscibility, and viscosity. The device described is easily and inexpensively produced and stored. The demonstration is large scale and works well for classrooms and community outreach events.
Infrared technology (FLIR Cameras) can be used to investigate intermolecular forces.
The blossoms of eastern skunk cabbage produce heat for a couple of weeks in early spring. This heat, which can be detected using an infrared camera, results from oxidation of carbohydrates. The mechanisms behind this process can be used to introduce energy transduction during classroom discussions of thermochemistry.
Observing the floating and sinking behavior of diet and sugared sodas is a classic chemistry demonstration. Learn how to perform this experiment as a quantitative lab that can be accomplished as an at-home activity!
Service animals will continue to become more common in chemical laboratories. It is important that chemistry faculty and departments are prepared to safely accomodate students with service dogs in laboratory courses.
Cold weather brings about the opportunity to demonstrate glass transition temperatures of polypropylene containers.
This demonstration offers an alternative to the disappearing rainbow demonstration using readily accessible materials.
Learn how to give pennies a beautiful, silvery-colored plating.
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.