This is the Blog for my 40-week, 6th period, Honors Chemistry Class for the 2017-18 school year at George Washington High School.

2-16-18: As shorter half day schedule due to report card conferences. We continued a short enrichment, this time on nuclear weapons and civil defense proliferation during the cold war featuring the videos listed on reference link #120.

2-15-18: As shorter half day schedule due to report card conferences. I checked the HW (Key terms Ch 6) and distributed the CRWS pack for that chapter.

2-14-18: We completed the video from yesterday.

2-13-18: We are ahead of my other classes, so we began a short enrichment and review with a presentation and film about David Hahn, "The Nuclear Boyscout". (See reference link #8). We got up to 53 seconds into part 2 (of 2) of the video. I did not check key terms.

2-12-18: We reviewed then had a quiz on chapter 5. Key terms for chapter 6 are due tomorrow.

2-9-18: We reviewed the HW and I checked it for grade. The quiz will be Monday. Key terms for chapter 6 are due Tuesday.

2-8-18: No class due to Eagles Superbowl victory parade. Go Birds!!!

2-7-18: I checked the HW for grade and we reviewed it. Students are to continue by completing the back side of the supplemental worksheet titled "Formulas with Polyatomic Ions". Our quiz will occur after trhe review of this worksheet.

2-6-18: We discussed names and formulas for ionic compounds. We completed the World of Chemistry #8 video and students submitted the video WS. Students are asked to complete CRWS 5.3 #32-45 for HW.

2-5-18: Students were asked to solve text page 180 #6&7. We reviewed these then continued the video from 1/19. Students answered questions from the video WS as it played. This WS is due upon completion of the video. I reviewed a few questions from the chapter 5 exam. We will finish CRWS 5.3 before we have the quiz. I also stood a beaker at an angle. balanced on a few crystals of table salt.

2-2-18: With limited attendance due to the pep rally (Go Eagles!!!), we discussed this weekend's upcoming PPPL science on Saturday lecture, and the one from two weeks ago on the Ig Nobels. We explored some the the research that lead to the 2015 and 2016 Ig Nobel prizes. We watched the TED talk "How a dead duck changed my life". For extra credit, students can review the actual Nobel prizes in Chemistry and Physics then list 5 prizes (Laureate, year of prize, and title of research) that have been awarded for topics covered during our course so far this year and also list one Ig Nobel that you found funny (in the same format).

2-1-18: We solved practice problem #1 on page 180 as a way of learning how to write formulas for polyatomic ionic compounds. Students are to complete the second side of the sheet from yesterday. Students received credit for side one today.

1-31-18: I handed out a two-sided worksheet covering names and formulas for binary and polyatomic ionic compounds. We discussed how to use the ionic formula table on the yellow periodic table reference sheet. Students are to complete #1-20 on the "Writing Binary Formulas" side of the distributed worksheet for HW; many were reviewed in class.

1-30-18: A fire drill shortened our class period. Students took a practice quiz covering names and formulas for simple ionic compounds.

1-29-18: We reviewed CRWS 5.3 # 1-30 and students received credit toward grade for having this assignment complete.

1-26-18: Students were asked to continue to solve problems #1-8 on CRWS 5.3. For HW to finish #9-31. I also handed out a supplemental sheet covering simple ionic compound names and formulas provided by Dr. Abraham. I showed the format of a quiz to occur once we finish this portion of the section.

1-25-18: We reviewed the properties of ionic compounds and I cooked a hot dog using them!. We continued with names and formulas of ionic compounds. Students are to solve CRWS 5.3 #1-31.

1-24-18: Students completed missing term 2 work while I showed various demonstrations (i.e. The come-back can and Lycopodium "Dragon's Breath" dust explosion).

1-23-18: Students took the midterm exam.

1-22-18: We reviewed the 5 properties of ionic compounds and discussed the midterm coverage.
We examined the Ig Nobel prizes, the topic of this past weekend's "Science on Saturday" at the PPPL. We learned about the purpose of "Little Miss Sweetie Poo" and examined the work of a few prize winners.

1-19-18: Students obtained the video WS for the World of Chemistry. We got to question # 3. I showed demonstrations of properties of ionic compounds including: Melting salt, Conductivity of solutions, crystal shape and brittleness.

1-18-18: Today was the last day of 30-minute classes (shortened due to Keystone testing). We reviewed the format (multiple choice) and coverage (chapters 1 to 5.1) for the midterm. We began watching World of Chemistry #8, "Chemical Bonds".

1-17-18: We complete our review of CRWS 5.1 and I gave credit for grade for its completion. We began discussing 5.2 and students copied onto CRWS 5.2, the five properties of ionic compounds. We began to discuss these with experimentation.

1-16-18: We discussed he PPPL lecture from this past weekend and I offered a way to see the lecture from a computer at home using the remote viewing link and tweet link to ask the speaker questions. I showed the video "Star Power" at : The midterm exam, covering material form the beginning of the course will be Tuesday 1/23.

1-12-18: A fire alarm shortened our already short 30-minute class. We talked again about the PPPL, "Science on Saturday" lecture series that begins tomorrow. Be there by 8:30 to get your seat int he lecture hall otherwise you will be in the lunchroom watching from remote screens. Extra credit is offered for proof that you were there.

1-11-18: We continued CRWS 5.1 up to #14.

1-10-18: We examined Khan Academy as a tool for learning our unit topics (See my home page for a link to Khan Academy subjects). We continued CRWS 5.1 up to #11.

1-9-18: We continued introducing ions and ionic compounds. We examined electron neutrality by studying the formulas for Sodium Borate and other cation/anion combinations. We began a review of CRWS 5.1 and got only to #4.

1-8-18: Short 7 minute class due to early dismissal. Students are to complete CRWS 5.1 #1-16. I created a green glass bead using Borax and copper wire.

1-3-18: We discussed interim grades and scheduling through the end of the term. I played a selection from the Voyager Golden Record set and we discussed the Voyager mission. Students received the CRWS pack for chapter 5 and the yellow periodic table we will use for the remainder of the course. We examined the common ion table on text page 831 that was copied onto the back of the yellow periodic table. I checked key terms for chapter 5 as credit toward grade. Students are required for HW to define, as key term #10 the term "Simple Ion".

12-22-17: With reduced classroom attendance due to holiday activities around the school, student either watch a school-wide movie in the auditorium or attended the Sumo wrestling event in the gym.

12-21-17: We continued the "Free Range Chemistry" Video to #23 Minerals of Sulfur. I demonstrated the synthesized sulfur dioxide from sulfur burning in air - we ventilated the room.

12-20-17: We continued the "Free Range Chemistry" Video to #20 Pyrite Fool's Gold. I demonstrated the Ammonia fountain.

12-19-17: Students took the chapter 4 exam. Two extra credit questions were offered as an additional letter grade on the exam. Key terms for chapter 5 are due after the holiday break.

12-18-17: Our chapter 4 exam is tomorrow. We began watching the video, "Free Range Chemistry" (See reference item 37). Students were given a video sheet to write one or two sentences per video section for extra credit. We got to #13, "Making Ammonia". I performed a couple of the demonstrations (exploding can, and ammonia odor/reaction with HCl.

12-15-17: We reviewed the work from yesterday. I offered extra credit to students who attend any of the PPPL Science on Saturday Programs (See reference item # 41). We explored some of the previous and upcoming lectures. The chapter 4 exam will be Tuesday.

12-14-17: I attended an all-day, in-school professional development on the topic of "writing across the curriculum". Students were required to respond to prompts on trends in the periodic table that included a graph of density across the period 4 and 5 elements. Responses are to be submitted as credit toward grade.

12-13-17: We completed our review of the chapter 4 pack which can be used as a reference on the exam.

12-12-17: Students took a quiz on Periodic table groups. I handed out an extra credit puzzle (Actinide word search and fill in the table with numbers an masses - to the nearest whole number). We watched the video "Ferocious Elements". I offered 5 points extra credit for a paragraph on the reactive element added to drinking water mentioned in the video. The paragraph should describe why that element is added. Students also received a word search puzzle and blank periodic table to fill in for extra credit as a way to become more familiar with the elements and groups on the table. The extra credit is due anytime before the holiday break.

12-11-17: We reviewed CRWS 4.3 up to #10.

12-8-17: Students were asked to identify atoms from selected pairs that had higher ionization energies (Li vs, Cs and I vs. Sb). Then we played Kahoot with 15 questions on trends on the periodic table. We defined the atomic radius, ion radius, and Electron Affinity.

12-7-17: We continued our discussion of ionization energy and completed our review of CRWS 4.2.

12-6-17: We discussed ionization energy, specifically why this property increases for carbon's first through fourth ionization energy and why the fifth ionization energy of carbon is so much greater.

12-5-17: We reviewed CRWS 4.2 up to #15 . I demonstrated the Calcium water reaction after showing the grey earthy salt formed on the surface of the calcium metal.

12-4-17: We began a discussion of property trends on the periodic table and reviewed. Students were asked to list each of the element properties described in text section 4.3 along with their general trends as they go across rows of the periodic table and as they go down columns of the table. We discussed ionization energy and electronegativity.

12-1-17: A guest teacher covered my classes today because I was at Drexel University, my alma mater, participating in a school trip. Students were given a constructed response paper on Dobereiner's triads and the history of the periodic table. They were required to complete and submit this paper for credit toward grade then continue with the CRWS pack for chapter 4.

11-29-17: I checked and reviewed CRWS 4.1. We also completed the group name chart (naming groups A-K) on the back of the chapter 4 pack. We reviewed properties of many of the groups of elements. We discussed groups like the semiconductors and transition elements which do not have similar valence electron configuration but do have similar properties.

11-28-17: I checked the HW it will count as Extra credit because the blog was not posted. We reviewed CRWS 4.1 and began to complete the group name chart (A-K) on the back of the package. We also began a discussion of crude oil refining and spermaceti wax harvesting. I showed a comparison of candles made from paraffin and spermaceti (synthetic).

11-27-17: We completed the video and I collected the WS for grade. We completed the material covering CRWS 4.1 and discussed details on the contributions of Dobereiner, Newlands, De Chancourtois, Mendeleev, Moseley, and Seaborg. We also discussed the Manhattan project. Students are to complete CRWS 4.1 and 4.2 for homework. Next class I will check these sheets for completion and we will review them.

11-22-17: Today was the second day of short periods due to half day dismissal for report card conferences. We continued a study of the history of the periodic table with a discussion of DeChancourtois. We also continued the World of Chemistry video to 16:34.

11-21-17: We began a study of the history of the periodic table. We discussed Dobereiner's triads along with calculations that demonstrated his findings.

11-20-17: We finished The world of chemistry video and students submitted the 1/4 sheet as credit toward grade. Students were introduced to property trends in the periodic table; we saw, specifically, a plot of electron negativity by atomic number from Mark Rosengarten's "Elemental Funkiness" song.

11-17-17: I demonstrated the 5-gallon jet bottle (combustion of alcohol). Students received CRWS pack for chapter 4 and we discussed CRWS 4.1 #1.

11-16-17: I attended an all-day, in-school professional development on the topic of "writing across the curriculum" and brought my colleagues into this class to see the implementation of the ode writing assignment. Once we left, students were required to complete and submit all work leading up to an including the final version of their ode.

11-15-17: I discussed tomorrow assignment, to write an ode to the periodic table. I read mine. We discussed the line, "We are stardust" relating it to chapter 4 section 4. We listened to a little bit of Crosby Still Nash and Young performing at Woodstock in 1969 featuring that line and also learned about the television series Cosmos and Cosmos, A Spacetime Odyssey featuring the work of Dr. Carl Sagen, who also popularized the stardust concept. We continued the video from yesterday to 11:43.

11-14-17: We discussed the Flat Earth society (For extra credit students can perform Item#51 from teh Assignments/EC tab on the left. We began the World of Chemistry video #7 on the periodic table and got up to a discussion of row and column identifiers. A video sheet was distributed and will be due from grade upon completion of the video.

11-13-17: We discussed the Free GWHS Community Thanksgiving Feast this Thursday night for you, your friends and family. You must register to attend. Key terms were not yet checked. We discussed the importance of writing professionally and watched the Weird Al parody video, "Word Crimes". We began a video titled "The Periodic Table", episode #7 from the world of chemistry series (See reference link #3). A worksheet was handed out and we got to question 3 at 4:33 into the video.

11-9-17: Students received the "Getting to know the periodic table" search question sheet. They worked on this in groups and then we reviewed it before class ended. The sheet was submitted as credit toward grade (2nd term).

11-8-17: We took the chapter 3 exam today. Key terms for chapter 4 are due Monday. Students who did not have Dalton's 5 principles memorized for the exam will have to submit them written 5 times by end of day tomorrow. If you missed the exam, the last day you can take it is Monday in order to have it count on your printed report card grade. The exam grade can be entered after Monday into term one but will not count toward the first printed report card grade.

11-6-17: We will have our chapter 3 exam on Wednesday. Students had the option of completing part one of the exam today (writing Dalton's 5 principals from memory or 5x each). The exam will cover the following items: Dalton's 5 principles (memorize or write 5 x), parts of the atom, atomic theory timeline, the electromagnetic spectrum, and electron configuration. Students will be permitted to use their reference sheet for the exam. A biography of Alfred Nobel with prompts was handed out to be completed as homework.

11-3-17: We finished a review of for the chapter 3 exam which will contain Dalton's 5 principles (memorize or write 5 x), parts of the atoms, atomic theory timeline, the electromagnetic spectrum, and electron configuration. Students will be permitted to use their reference sheet for the exam. We also completed the Bill Nye Greatest discovery video and students submitted the video worksheet for credit toward grade.

11-2-17: I was absent for a medical issue. Students were given an article to read from the Wall Street Journal with seven prompts to answer as credit toward grade. Within those prompts was an extra credit assignment. Students who did not receive the materials in class can get them here.

11-1-17: Students wrote electron configuration notation for elements 1-18 and indicated which ones were valence and inert electrons using page 3 of the 10-26-17 packet. The chapter 3 exam will be Wednesday.

10-31-17: Students were asked to solve P. 99 Sample C#1-2. We also drew electron configuration diagrams for these two problems. We reviewed these and the three electron configuration rules. Students then participated with a partner performing the electron configuration penny activity. Credit toward grade was given for completion of this activity. Students were asked to study the electron configuration diagrams for the first 18 atoms provided in the package delivered 10-26-17. As an alternative assignment for those who missed class, students must write the three electron configuration rules *Aufbau, Pauli, and Hund's) in simple language (copied from a classmate's notes) and then write the electron configurations notation and create a diagram, like that on text page 98, for the atoms of Iron and Oxygen.

10-30-17: We discussed electron configuration notation and diagrams. Students solved P. 99 #5-6 which we reviewed in class.

10-27-17: A short day due to half-day schedule. Students received credit for their marked up periodic table. We began to review electron configuration notation.

10-26-17: Students marked up their pink periodic table with row labels and data to help them with electron configuration based on the information presented on text page 119. Students also received a two page stapled pack covering electron configuration and completed the "fill in the highest energy level electron configuration" notation on page two of the pack.

10-25-17: We went over the simple wording of the electron configuration rules. We examined the S, P, D, and F blocks on text pages 119. We began talking about electron configuration notation and diagrams.

10-24-17: We observed bright light spectrum for various elements using spectrum tubes and spectrophotometers. All students were handed diffraction gratings to observe spectra as well. We completed the Atomic Theory Timeline and watched most of a short video titled "The Higgs Boson Explained" to delve a little into quark theory.

10-23-17: Today is "Mole Day" make a mole for extra credit using instructions from assignment #31. We began to examine the hydrogen spectra and the work of Neils Bohr (text page 94).

10-20-17: Many students were out due to sports and the DECA competition. We began watching the "World of Chemistry Video #6, The Atom" (See reference link 3). We reviewed CRWS 3.2 #1-11, students should complete this page (up to #17).

10-19-17: I was attending a seminar at the Franklin Institute. Students were required to create then submit for grade a favorite food data journal to allow scientific comparisons of their favorite foods using "Scott's Pizza Tour Journal" as a model.

10-18-17: We continued the Bill Nye video to 22:16. I demonstrated the sodium metal + water --> hydrogen gas + sodium hydroxide reaction using an acid-base color indicator to show that sodium hydroxide dissolves in water to make a basic solution.

10-17-17: Students solved and then we discussed CRWS 3.2 #1-12. I also demonstrated coal combustion and gasification.

10-16-17: In preparation for discussions about the behavior of electrons, students created a graphic organizer about the electromagnetic spectrum based on Fig 18 P. 92,

10-13-17: Students completed an activity on names and symbols of isotopes (1/2 sheet) as credit toward grade. We examined the University of Colorado phet simulation on nuclear fission to examine the behavior of uranium-235, 236, 238, and 239).

10-12-17: We discussed atomic models on the timeline through Rutherford. We solved #18 on CRWS 3.2 then continued the Bill Nye Video up into Chemical Structure )12:18)

10-11-17: No class due to SAT/PSAT testing.

10-10-10: Students were asked to become familiar with names and symbols on the period table. We played a few songs. We watched several Periodic Table Songs listing elements (Tom Lehrer - The Elements and "In order").

10-9-17: We began a video titled "Greatest Discoveries in Chemistry" hosted by Bill Nye ( See item 27 on the reference links page). We got up to "Atoms combine to form Molecules". Students are completing a video sheet as the video plays. We reviewed Preistly's experiment with plants and mice in oxygen and we reviewed the carbon cycle.

10-6-17: Students were asked to solve #19 on the Chapter CRWS pack in section 3.2. We reviewed names and symbols for isotopes. I checked the HW, key terms for chapter 3 as credit toward grade.

10-5-17: Students received the CRWS pack for chapter 3 and were asked to write Dalton's 5 principles from text page 78 to memorize for the next exam. We began to discuss Atomic Theory and history. For extra credit, students can play little alchemy and create 200 elements on that game.

10-4-17: Students took a pre-learning assessment on atoms and the periodic table. This is a credit/no credit assignment that only requires a student to read and answer the questions as best they can to receive credit. The score does not matter, only the submission of the assessment. When retaken in the spring, it will be possible to demonstrate that major course learning objectives were achieved. Students then created a table of properties for subatomic parts of the atoms (protons, neutrons, and electrons). 23 key term definitions for chapter 3 are due Friday.

10-3-17: Students sat for the unit 1 exam covering chapters 1 & 2 in the textbook. It was open notes, closed book. For HW students are to write the key term definitions for chapter 3.

10-2-17: Students were given a review sheet with sample problems for the exam.

9-29-17: We reviewed temperature scales and conversion equations. We spoke about specific and latent heat. We have covered all the material for unit 1. Students should prepare for an exam covering chapters 1 & 2 in the text as well as material gone over in class. Notebooks should be organized for easy reference and a graded notebook check.

9-28-19: I was out for a funeral so, students were given a work to work to do from the book (P.9: Review question #5, P.14: Practice problems #1, 2, and 3, P. 19: #1, P.28: #3, 4, and 9, P.35 #1-10), then submit.

9-27-17: We watched episode #1 from "The World of Chemistry" video series and students submitted 10 facts from the video written as they watched it. The video can be found as item 3 within the reference tab on the left.

9-26-17: I handed out a paper containing sample exam questions and a graphic organizer for matter and energy. We completed the graphic organizer in class while discussing its contents.

9-25-17: I reviewed the HW. We continued with the factor unit method using it to determine the density of water in pounds per gallon.

9-20-17: I checked and reviewed the HW for grade. We reviewed and completed the sheet in the Math pack titled "Converting between US conventional and SI measurements". For practice, HW students were asked to convert the speed limit sign hanging in the room to miles per hour. For extra credit, also identify that speed.

9-19-17: We began a review of the metric system units and prefixes. Students were asked to complete the "Metric Measurement Conversions" worksheet from the math pack for HW. As a surprise bonus, we studied some samples of dry ice, solid carbon dioxide (CO2). We also created a bomb (behind a safety shield, of course) using a closed water bottle, pressurized by the CO2 gas.
9-18-17: We reviewed the problems for the HW on significant figures and students were given homework credit if they were able to display the first page of the math pack complete (both sides). We distinguished between accuracy and precision in measurement. We examined mass numbers on the periodic table as an example. Students were introduced to the factor unit method.

9-15-17: We began a discussion on accuracy and precision in measurements. Students were provided with the "Math Pack", a stapled pack of reference pages and problems. For HW students are to complete the problems on significant figures and on scientific notation. We solved P.19 # 4 and began to discuss the conversion of units within the metric (SI) system.

9-14-17: For classwork grade, students were asked to create a bar graph of the liquid and solid densities of the materials found in Figure 4 on page 17 of the text.

9-13-17:Students were asked to complete CRWS 1.2 #1-5 which discussed in class. We discussed density as a characteristic property and explored an anomaly in the density of 1982 pennies. Students were a witness, by my cutting two pennies in half, to the zinc composition of post-1982 pennies and the pure copper composition of pre-1982 pennies.

9-12-17: Students were asked to continue with CRWS Chapter 1 Section 2. We discussed characteristic properties of matter. I demonstrated the sublimation and deposition of iodine. We discussed endothermic and exothermic chemical reactions and the topic of cryogenics as a way of slowing down the rate of chemical reaction.

9-11-17: I checked the HW for grade (Key Terms for chapter 1). We reviewed Kinetic Molecular Theory and discussed physical changes. Students were asked to create a graphic organizer like that on page 381 and to identify each of the exo and endothermic physical changes on that sheet. We also defined size reduction and dissolving as physical changes.

9-8-17: Students were provided with the publisher's concept review worksheet (CRWS from this point forward) for chapter 1. I collected the methane mamba lab report and played "Timbuk 3 - My future's so bright....". We discussed CRWS 1.1 # 1-13. For HW students are to complete CRWS #1.1 up to #23 and their list of 23 key term definitions for chapter 1, numbered and underlined (or highlighted).

9-7-17: I distributed a lab equipment identifier sheet, reviewed the 10 questions on one side of the sheet, then repeated the Methane Mamba demonstration. For homework, students were asked to write a mini lab report in the following format: 1 - Title, 2- Equipment list (with assembly drawing), 3 - Step by Step procedures, 4 - Observations, 5 - Safety precautions (Safety First). Those who missed the demonstration can complete Item 30 from the Assignments/EC link on the left.

9-6-17: Students submitted their HW for grade. They received a sheet on reading skills, "Getting to know your textbook" which asks questions about the textbook and conclude with a key term definition list for the chapters. Key Terms are due as a homework grade. I demonstrated the Methane Mamba and students were asked to consider the equipment and procedure to perform this demonstration safely.

9-5-17: First day of class. I hope you felt welcome and enthused about the subject. Students received a hard copy print of the syllabus to keep in their notebook and were assigned seats. Note: The syllabus is available in digital format as item #1 on the tab titled "Assignments /EC" on the left. We discussed oxygen and some of its properties. I demonstrated how oxygen cannot be used to blow out a candle and its affect on burning steel wool. Your homework tonight is to Complete the two-part prompt handed out in class.