For the 2018-19 school year, buy a copy of the lab book Chemistry on a Budget. It’s a great resource for your class!
There are two versions of each lab, one with a ten-question conclusion and one with directions for a full lab report. This way the teacher has the option! Each lab is two pages to allow for one two-sided handout.
A 5-Star Customer Review of Chemistry on a Budget at amazon.com states:
“[S]traight forward, to the point, using household chemicals…this is the lab book for you.
I teach high school chemistry and this is exactly what [I] was looking for. Labs included simple household chemicals that could be easily found. Nice format, easy to follow along procedures, and touches on every topic of our chemistry curriculum.”
You can buy this lab book for $23 at amazon.com or lulu.com. It will take 1-2 weeks to get to you -- Order Now. It’s a great resource!
*Some of you have already purchased my lab book – be sure to check out Page 141 !
“Northern China's roadsides are peppered with deciduous phoenix trees, producing an abundance of fallen leaves in autumn. These leaves are generally burned in the colder season, exacerbating the country's air pollution problem. Investigators in Shandong, China, recently discovered a new method to convert this organic waste matter into a porous carbon material that can be used to produce high-tech electronics.”
“Many roads in this part of China are lined with trees of the genus Paulownia, sometimes called phoenix trees. Despite the government’s disapproval, many locals burn the fallen leaves, worsening the country’s notorious air pollution. In Beijing alone, about 2 million tonnes of leaves and other plant waste are burned every year.
Now, Hongfang Ma at the Qilu University of Technology in Jinan and her colleagues have figured out how to turn phoenix tree leaves into organic capacitors. These could be used like batteries to store energy, potentially avoiding some of that air pollution into the bargain.
The process of making organic capacitors does release a little carbon dioxide, but not nearly as much as would be emitted if you let the same quantity of material burn or decay, says Caroline Burgess Clifford at Penn State University. “Any type of use of any waste material is a good thing.”
“The investigators used a multistep, yet simple, process to convert tree leaves into a form that could be incorporated into electrodes as active materials. The dried leaves were first ground into a powder, then heated to 220 degrees Celsius for 12 hours. This produced a powder composed of tiny carbon microspheres. These microspheres were then treated with a solution of potassium hydroxide and heated by increasing the temperature in a series of jumps from 450 to 800 C.
The chemical treatment corrodes the surface of the carbon microspheres, making them extremely porous. The final product, a black carbon powder, has a very high surface area due to the presence of many tiny pores that have been chemically etched on the surface of the microspheres. The high surface area gives the final product its extraordinary electrical properties.
The investigators ran a series of standard electrochemical tests on the porous microspheres to quantify their potential for use in electronic devices. The current-voltage curves for these materials indicate that the substance could make an excellent capacitor. Further tests show that the materials are, in fact, supercapacitors, with specific capacitances of 367 Farads/gram, which are over three times higher than values seen in some graphene supercapacitors .”
“A capacitor is a widely used electrical component that stores energy by holding a charge on two conductors, separated from each other by an insulator. Supercapacitors can typically store 10-100 times as much energy as an ordinary capacitor, and can accept and deliver charges much faster than a typical rechargeable battery. For these reasons, supercapacitive materials hold great promise for a wide variety of energy storage needs, particularly in computer technology and hybrid or electric vehicles.”
“The research has been focused on looking for ways to convert waste biomass into porous carbon materials that can be used in energy storage technology. Along with the tree leaves, the team has successfully converted potato waste, corn straw, pine wood, rice straw and other agricultural wastes into carbon electrode materials. The team hopes to improve even further on electrochemical properties of porous carbon materials by optimizing the preparation process and allowing for doping or modification of the raw materials.”
This is another attempt to find a way to use a waste material and reduce the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere rather than letting the leaves simply decompose.
Here are several past blog posts that you will find useful for the Beginning of the School Year:
07/06/2014 Decorating Your Classroom
07/13/2014 Chemistry Laboratory Safety
07/20/2014 Classroom Grading Programs
07/27/2014 Classroom Ideas –Daily Announcements
and Teacher Websites
08/03/2014 Lab Report Help
08/10/2014 Lab – Reaction in a Bag
03/25/2015 Your School Library
08/27/2015 Outlines for Student Notes
09/17/2015 Multiple Versions of Quizzes and Tests
11/27/2015 Your School Library II
08/28/2016 The First Days of School
01/12/2018 Grading Rubrics for Lab Reports
08/17/2018 Chemistry Using Virtual Reality
Blog posts useful for an Intro to Chemistry unit include:
08/19/2014 Measurement and Significant Figures
08/24/2014 SI System & Scientific Notation
09/02/2014 Dimensional Analysis or
The Factor-Label Method
09/19/2014 Element Symbols & Intro to Chemical
For the 2018/2019 school year, buy a copy of the lab book Chemistry on a Budget – it is a great resource! You can examine the labs and decide what you want to use during the school year.
*This Blog contains several entries that would be helpful to your chemistry classroom. Check out the Topic List to help you to find past Blog entries.
Also, Write To Me about your successes, challenges, or questions in the Chemistry Classroom.
Have a great weekend!