Friday, February 22, 2013

If You're Not Part of the Solution...

then you're part of the precipitate!

My Honors Chem class worked through a qualitative analysis lab to confirm (or deny) the presence of zinc, iron, and silver ions in a solution.  The students took advantage of the precipitation reactions that occur when these metal ions are mixed with chloride, hydroxide, ammonia, and other anions in solution.  

First the lab teams worked with a known solution that contained each of the three ions, to learn how to make a positive ID of each one.  Then they were given an unknown solution that contained one or more of these ions.  The lab teams worked through the series of precipitation reactions to reveal what was in their unknown solutions.

The groups created a presentation in Google Docs to present their work.  My instructions were pretty simple:  one slide for each ion, one-three slides for your unknown, and an intro and a conclusion slide.  What I got from these creative students was very fun to read and included accurate information about the chemistry involved.  I enjoyed them all, but this one stood "out in the crowd" for both creativity and good chemistry.  Take a look!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Meet the Chemistry Myth Busters

Colby Tucker and Sharon Geyer are the courageous leaders of this  pack of Chemistry Myth Busters.
Meet the 2012-2013 Chemistry Myth Busters!  These inquisitive young scientists are setting out to test some common myths.  Here are the Chemistry Myth Buster teams and the myths they are testing.

Afia and Taylor are testing the myth that the boys bathrooms have more germs than the girls bathrooms.

Pelumi and Carlin are testing the affect of low pressure on body parts.  They want to test the myth that body parts explode in space.

Grace and Nick are testing the myth that when you drop a piece of butter toast it will always land buttered-side down.

Thomas and Jane are testing the myth that you can pop popcorn using the heat from the sun.

Austin and India are testing the myth that people will always here hidden messages in recordings of spoken english  that is played backwards.  (I think I hear Stairway to Heaven playing in the background.)

Josh is testing the myth that baseballs that are dried out will travel farther when hit with a baseball bat.  Sounds like a fun experiment!

Khalil and Thomas are testing the myth that Coke can be used as a windshield de-icer.  (Sounds messy to me!)

Alex, Olivia, and Nikki are testing the 5-second rule.  (A classic!)

Elisabeth and Abby are testing if boys have more cooties (germs) than girls.

Cecilia and Isaiah are testing the myth that club soda will remove stains from clothing.