web page

New online tool: The Atomsmith Classroom Online

I would like to share a new product from Atomsmith, the Atomsmith Classroom Online. It's run in HTML 5, and thus no problems with Java, Flash, or any other system. Priced at $10.99/year for teacher access and $1.00/year per student, it is within reach of many school budgets. 

A replacement Maxwell-Boltzmann Distribution Simulation

Maxwell-Boltzmann Distribution Simulation from Wolfram

In this Pick, I will share a replacement simulation I found for studying Maxwell-Boltzmann Distribution Curves, as the previous online simulation I used was no longer working due to Java issues.

ACS Celebrates the Achievements of Women Scientists in American History

Women’s History Month (March 1 - 31, 2017) honors the contributions of women to American culture and society. The American Chemical Society has selected some women scientists that contributed to important discoveries during times of rampant gender discrimination. Consider sharing these with your students.

New Benefits of AMTA Membership

American Modeling Teachers Association

The American Modeling Teachers Association (AMTA) is an international, professional community comprised of over 2800 passionate, innovative, and connected educators. Members include high school and university level STEM educators, educational research professionals, as well as pre-service and retired teachers.

The Mystery of Matter: Search for the Elements video series

If your not familiar with the video series "The Mystery of Matter, Search for the Elements" then I highly recommend their use as part of your curriculum. The Mystery of Matter: Search for the Elements is a PBS series about the amazing human story behind the Periodic Table. The videos, most of them 4-12 minutes long, draw on the interviews, re-enactments, animations and photographs that were shot and collected for the PBS series, with supplementary animations and images as needed. In all, the videos make up about three hours of programming. I shared several of the video clips with my high school students and they really seemed to enjoy them mentioning the reason was because the videos were done using actors to tell the stories and it was similar to watching a movie.

ACS publishes Guidelines for Secondary School Laboratory Safety

Guidelines for Chemical Laboratory Safety in Secondary Schools

The ACS Committee on Chemical Safety has published new Guidelines for Chemical Laboratory Safety in Secondary Schools. This document is organized with the R.A.M.P. concept – Recognize the hazard, Assess the risk of the hazard, Minimize the risk of the hazard, and Prepare for emergencies. The online document includes two pages for each letter that could be printed and posted in the classroom to reinforce these principles of safety. The documents are provided to strengthen the safety practices of teachers and help them to promote a culture of safety that their students will take with them throughout their academic and professional careers.

Gizmos: An Online Simulation Tool

Gizmos Logo

This week I had the opportunity to attend part 2 of a 3 day PD for Gizmos, courtesy of a district grant working with ExploreLearning. In a room full of middle school science colleagues (half of whom I knew), I was able to glean a ton of great information.

Introducing Superheavy Elements to Students

 Lawrence Berkeley National Lab

            In July of 2016 we learned the names of the four new elements that were confirmed in January; Nihonium (Nh), moscovium (Mc), tennessine (Ts) and oganesson (Og). Although the newest superheavy elements complete the seventh period of the Periodic Table, curiosity has been reignited in our classrooms as students ask, what’s next?

The World's Biggest Flame Test....

LightBuckets.com

Most chemistry teachers I know do flame tests with their students. It ties in well with many topics, is colorful and the kids enjoy seeing the colors and burning stuff. There are many applications. For years I always mentioned that astronomers use the idea of the flame test. They simply look at stars and examine the spectra from the light of these stars. They then match the spectra with the elements and then they can see and infer what elements are millions of light years away. I always mentioned this but never was able to demonstrate it.