I need to thank a lady from Texas. We had just finished the classification of matter and I have always wanted to follow up with a distillation. I have talked about it and once I even got some extremely expensive glassware that I carefully set up, managed to break by third bell and really ticked off the AP teacher. At Chem Ed 2015, a teacher from Texas showed me this quick and dirty way to do a distillation that the kids can do. First, let me say that this is not my idea. I forgot her name. "Lady from Texas", let me just say "thank you". If you are reading this, please shoot me an email and I will be more than happy to give you credit. It worked really well.
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Most chemical educators will agree that exciting demonstrations are excellent motivators to create interest in science. They are also a way to create interest in the community, motivate the student-demonstrators, and perhaps to make a little money to support special activities of an ACS Chem Club. Chemical demonstration shows, organized around holidays or other special occasions have a long and honored history. Pacifica High School (Garden Grove, CA) took its inspiration from the lecture-demonstrations of Michael Faraday, given during the Christmas holidays of 1860-61. (The Chemical History of A Candle).
Have you ever worked with someone on a project and you couldn’t get a hold of them? Or you realized, a bit too late, that they need extra reminders to get stuff done? Oh, and by the way, how did that guy get to be in charge? As adults, we can probably remember more than one situation where this has happened. Maybe it was in school, maybe it’s in your job.
For anyone out there looking to do any screen recording may have already invested in Camtasia. If not, I highly reccommend investing in it. I just ran the latest update for Camtasia for mac and it now offers the capability to record directly to your mobile apple device.
Effective Student Engagement
The September 2015 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education is now available online to subscribers. This issue includes articles on flipped classroom; introductory and general chemistry; organic chemistry activities; biochemistry demonstrations and labs; computer-based learning; chemical education research; from the archive: chemistry in context.
Last year, I worked hard to teach my students how to fail and I believe it was the most important lesson they could have taken away from my class.
“I wish I knew then what I know now.” How often do you reflect on your first year of teaching? When I run into a student from my first few years, I catch myself hiding behind a clothes rack or ducking down the frozen food aisle. I’m embarrassed.
I just wanted to share a resource that I have been using since I started teaching AP chemistry last year.
Recently, I saw this really funny meme on facebook about the creative process. I think it also sums up designing and sustaining students in long term inquiry:
Helping students to interpret graphs and analyze them is an important for many reasons. Spending time training students to do just that will help them to become critical thinkers. The Graph of the Week website was recommended by a member of our school's English department during professional development designed to help every department incorporate literacy standards into their curriculum.