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.
Matter & Change
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!
The concept of density is investigated regularly- in lecture, lab, or both- in Introductory (non-science majors) or the majors General Chemistry 1 courses. This post describes a short activity involving ice core density.
The author explains a virtual chemistry lab activity for use in a high school chemistry class. This activity is an excellent way to introduce measurements, significant figures, and the concept of density.
Learn how to form a blue-green copper compound on a penny, and then use that compound to make green flames. This is a great summer time activity for your next campfire!
Bill Hammack, Michael Faraday, and the timeless beauty of the science behind the combustion of a candle. "There is no more open door by which you can enter into the study of science than by considering the physical phenomena of a candle," Michael Faraday.
The June, 2018 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education contains an article that describes a simple, yet fascinating experiment that you and your students are going to love! It involves the use of butterfly wings from the genus Morpho. I obtained some of these wings and enjoyed experimenting with them. You will too!
In an effort to implement the science and engineering practices of the NGSS, I have tried to introduce argumentation as a practice into my chemistry courses. I share some growing pains and what I have learned through the process in this blog post.
I have been in the lab conducting tests on the chemical and physical properties of various geological samples. In my investigations I’ve found that hematite is a particular mineral that is easy to acquire and quite amenable to experimentation.
As I began to prepare my labs for this upcoming year, I decided to put a bit of a twist on a previous density of a block lab I had used in the past entitled the Measurement Challenge that is sold by Flinn Scientific. It can also be used to find the mass of a block given the materials density and requiring students to measure and calculate the blocks volume. My added twist resulted in great scientific discourse.