Chad Husting is a self proclaimed science nerd who loves helping kids figure things out. He is a veteran high school teacher with a classroom in Ohio where he teaches honors and academic chemistry. He has been a Lead Contributor for ChemEd X since 2017. If you follow his blog, you know he is a life long learner that is always looking for new ways to teach, present and grade content.
Chad has created over 200 YouTube videos on topics in chemistry and is CK-12 certified. He holds a master's degree in organic chemistry and he also completed a 3 year training program with Project TIMU at Miami University that culminated with a published paper on assessment, Using Teacher Action Research in High School Chemistry to Develop Novel Assessment Tools. Have you ever done a "zero G" flight? Chad has! He has taken part in some of the same training astronauts experience while he was working on an experiment in zero G!
With the hope of helping readers get to know him better, we asked him a series of questions. Check out his responses.
Q. What made you decide to become a chemistry teacher?
A. I had a great chemistry teacher, Sr. Cecilia Sehr, in high school. She was an awesome encouraging hands on chemistry teacher. I did not want to spend my life in a lab with no windows. I was also inspired by Carl Sagan's book "Cosmos".
Q. Describe your passion for education.
A. I would rather teacher 35 years once instead of one year 35 times. Science is about doing and not passively listening.
Q. How do you remain up to date with current science topics and methods of teaching?
A. ChemEd Xchange of course!
Q. What is your favorite way to get to know your students at the beginning of the year?
A. We play a 50 question game and I try to call home* to every student.
*Read Chad's blog post: Classroom Culture - Phoning Home...before there is a problem...
Q. Describe a book, article, podcast, or other publication that had an impact on your teaching methods.
A. POGIL guided inquiry books including POGIL Activities for High School Chemistry.
Q. Describe one classroom management strategy which allows your classroom to run efficiently.
A. Always plan for more hands on activities than I have time for!
Q. Describe a teaching strategy that works well for you and your students.
A. Start with a "problem of the day", use hands-on activities and use guided inquiry.
Q. How do you continually assess your students throughout your lessons?
A. Standards based grading**
** Check out Chad's Blogs: Card Sorts... What to do next?...and Happy Accidents, Standards Based Grading and the "Redo" and his ChemEd X Talk: Journey with Standards Based Grading.
Q. How do you engage the variety of learners in your classroom?
A. I try multiple methods of instruction instead of the same thing all the time.
Q. What advice do you have for new and aspiring teachers?
A. Remember it is about the kids, have fun and take time for self care.
Q. Describe a lesson or laboratory activity that engaged your students.
A. My two favorite styles of labs are Guided Inquiry, similar to Argument Driven Inquiry and "target labs". When exploring the ideal gas law and stoichiometry, each lab group gets a different size piece of magnesium. They have to predict the final outcome of the amount of gas and then see if they actually get close to their "target". See Molar Volume of Gas - Lab Tip and Mg Lab - A Lab(s) That is Great for Differentiation.
Q. Describe a chemical demonstration that excites you as much as it excites your students.
A. I read "The Paperbag Princess" just before homecoming. We end with "Whatever happen to the stupid judgemental prince?" I then put a gummy bear (the prince) in some hot potassium chlorate (the dragon) and the prince gets destroyed. The guys in the room figure out not to judge their dates and the girls start cheering.
Q. How do you infuse technology in your lessons?
A. Venier probes and web based platforms for many processes.****
****Check out Chad's posts: Cool 300 Year Old Technology and some Online Resources..., Atomsmith Take 2 and The Evolution of Social Media in the Chemistry Classroom.
Q. What chemistry concept do you find ato be the most challenging for students?
A. Stoichiometry and Acid Base*****
*****Read Chad's blog to find out how he approaches these topics. Stoichiometry - How the students do it, A nice quick and easy stoichiometry lab..., Titration: What do you prefer?, Titrations and Microscale Chemistry
Q. Why did you choose to become involved with ChemEd X?
A. Great people with great ideas.
Q. What advice do you have for teachers who would like to become more involved with ChemEd X?