ChemEd X articles address topics in chemical education ranging across the entire spectrum of the chemical sciences.
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The authors revisit "flattening the curve" demonstrations published during 2020 to see how they could represent the impact of vaccinations on the COVID 19 battlefront. These demonstrations do not demonstrate the mechanisms of vaccines themselves, but are rather analogies to their potential effect on a population. In these analogies, gas production still represents illness, but this time people are represented by objects added to the solutions which either enable gas production (unvaccinated individuals) or do not enable gas production (vaccinated individuals). These simple experiments are best used as stand-alone demonstrations, and links to videos are included in this writeup.
On January 26, 2021, Melissa Hemling presented a ChemEd X Talk about “whiteboarding” in a hybrid or virtual classroom. Students collaborate in small groups on classkick.com to digitally analyze data, create and modify models, and/or complete practice problems. Melissa shares how she uses the digital whiteboards to gauge student understanding and pinpoint misconceptions like she did pre-COVID. You can watch the edited recording of Melissa's Talk and access the document she shared during the presentation here.
Providing students with meaningful feedback greatly enhances their learning and achievement. With the move to online and hybrid formats, teachers have had to scramble to modify their usual process for communicating that feedback. On January 21, 2021, Ariel Serkin presented in a ChemEd X Talk about the process she is using and how she is providing feedback to her students remotely. You can watch the edited recording of Ariel's Talk and access the document she shared during the presentation here.
The January 2021 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education is now available online to subscribers. Modern chemistry programs must include the skills and techniques that enable their graduates to perform experiments safely, and, in response to a call for papers, scientists and educators from around the world have contributed articles to a special issue on Chemical Safety Education: Methods, Culture, and Green Chemistry. The articles in the issue are broadly distributed among topics covering resources, green chemistry, safety culture, and pedagogy. This issue is a resource for ideas and discussion to encourage "a new way to look at safety", with a focus on assessing hazards, minimizing risk, and valuing a strong chemical safety culture.
The ChemEd X team is pleased to announce ChemEd X Talks! These 30 minute live Zoom events are free, but registration is required. Teachers are asked to keep their video on, ask questions and participate in the discussion by offering their own ideas and experience with the topic. Register for our next ChemEd X Talk or find recordings for past Talks that you may have missed here!
Near the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic ChemEd X began compiling a list of both new and previously published ChemEd X posts and resources that might be useful to teachers while teaching remotely. Topics include Technology & Teaching Resources, Strategies and Tips for Teaching Online, Lesson Ideas Suitable for Online Instruction and more. This list continues to grow. Readers are encouraged to check in often to find new content and to comment with additional resources that we can add to our list.
The December 2020 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education is now available online to subscribers. Topics featured in this issue include: teaching during COVID-19; examining models used by students; chemical structure; game-based learning; interdisciplinary courses; teaching chemistry using plants; laboratory instruction with real-world context; fluorescence; exploring spectroscopy; thermodynamics; chemical education research; from the archives: photography.
The ACS Exams Institute is pleased to announce that new tutorial practice exams are now available for General Chemistry, (first term) and Organic Chemistry (full year).
Michael Morgan shares a lesson that he has used for many years that not only requires students to explain a topic that they have not been directly taught but also to develop explanations based on previous knowledge. He has used this lesson as a multiday “in-class” assignment and also as an “at-home” independent study. It works well in both scenarios with only minor revision. The lesson is based on Alfred Werner’s work on deducing the structures of coordination compounds.
The November 2020 issue of the Journal of Chemical Education is now available online to subscribers. Topics featured in this issue include: microplastic contamination and the environment; diversity, equity, inclusion, and respect in chemistry education research and practice; teaching in the time of COVID-19; chemistry and health; service learning; using games to teach; examining structures; solubility; spectroscopy; natural products chemistry; understanding polymer chemistry; materials science; assessment; analyzing student understanding; from the archives: battery explorations.