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High School, Chemistry Lesson Plans (12 results)

An experienced chemistry professor used to say that it took about one explosion per week to maintain college students' attention in chemistry lectures. At that rate, we'd get in pretty big trouble with a lot of parents and teachers! Don't worry, we still have lots of bubbles, fizzes, bangs, and color changes for you to explore.

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Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
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How does surface area affect the speed of a chemical reaction? Let your students find out in this sizzling lesson plan! In this project, they will explore this correlation by crushing Alka-Seltzer® tablets into different sized particles and measuring how long it takes for them to dissolve in water. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-PS1-5. Apply scientific principles and evidence to provide an explanation about the effects of changing the temperature or concentration of the reacting particles on the rate at which a reaction occurs.
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-8th
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Junkbots are easy-to-build robots that you can make using a simple circuit and some recyclable materials. In this lesson, your students will learn about engineering design as they compete to build the fastest robot. No previous robotics experience is required! Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • MS-ETS1-4. Develop a model to generate data for iterative testing and modification of a proposed object, tool, or process such that an optimal design can be achieved.
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
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This lab discusses types of reactions and replaces traditional reaction experiments involving chemicals such as lead (II) nitrate, barium chloride, and silver nitrate with greener alternatives. This lab is designed to challenge students to identify types of chemical reactions and distinguish between those that use safer, less hazardous chemicals and those that are more dangerous. Students will make a choice as to which reaction they will perform using the 12 Principles of Green Chemistry. They… Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
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In this lesson, students will employ the enzymatic decomposition reaction of hydrogen peroxide to investigate how chemical reactions are affected by enzymes and different substrate concentrations. Students will be challenged to control the rate of the reaction by adjusting the amount of substrate and thus changing the catalase activity. Foam production, created by the enzymatic breakdown of hydrogen peroxide into water and oxygen, will function as a proxy for the reaction rate. Based on their… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-PS1-5. Apply scientific principles and evidence to provide an explanation about the effects of changing the temperature or concentration of the reacting particles on the rate at which a reaction occurs.
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
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Teach your students how temperature affects chemical reaction rates in this highly visual experiment! Students will investigate color change during the reaction of food color with bleach, and measure the reaction times for different reaction temperatures. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-PS1-5. Apply scientific principles and evidence to provide an explanation about the effects of changing the temperature or concentration of the reacting particles on the rate at which a reaction occurs.
Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-12th
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In this lesson, students will do a simple exercise with M&Ms to understand what environmental impact factor (E-factor) is, how it applies to chemical processes, and how waste from chemical reactions can be reduced by applying the principles of green chemistry. Learning Objectives Students will: Understand strategies for reducing waste Perform an exercise which has them practice E-factor Relate the exercise to chemical processes NGSS Alignment MS-PS1-3. Gather and make… Read more
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Lesson Plan Grade: 6th-12th
Create a two-part system for filtering greywater. Teams will focus on communication and systems engineering as they build separate components to filter solid and liquid waste and then combine them into one device. Learning Objectives Students will: Consider the potential effects of drought and how greywater could be part of the solution. Design a system for filtering out solid waste or liquid waste. Consider effective communication strategies with their team. Collaborate on their design… Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
How does a solar cell work? In this green chemistry lesson plan, students will build and test their own dye-sensitized solar cells using dye from blackberries. Along the way, they will learn about the principles of green chemistry and evaluate how solar cell manufacturing can go green. Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-ESS3-2. Evaluate competing design solutions for developing, managing, and utilizing energy and mineral resources based on cost-benefit ratios.
  • HS-ESS3-4. Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces the impact of human activities on natural systems.
Lesson Plan Grade: 5th-12th
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Where does CO₂ come from and how does excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere affect the ocean and aquatic life? In this lesson students are introduced to the carbon cycle and explore pH and acidification with hands-on experiments. They then connect their experimental data with real-world data to evaluate claims about carbon dioxide and ocean acidification. Finally, students are introduced to how different companies and research groups are using green chemistry to build carbon capture… Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
Students are challenged to use computer-aided design (CAD) software to create "complete" 3D-printed molecule models that take into consideration bond angles and lone-pair positioning. To begin, they explore two interactive digital simulations: "build a molecule" and "molecule shapes." This aids them in comparing and contrasting existing molecular modeling approaches—ball-and-stick, space-filling, and valence shell electron pair repulsion (VSEPR)—so as to… Read more
NGSS Performance Expectations:
  • HS-PS1-1. Use the periodic table as a model to predict the relative properties of elements based on the patterns of electrons in the outermost energy level of atoms.
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
This activity focuses on the use of graphene in organic fibers, and their applications in organic electronics, e-textiles and wearable technologies. Students learn about the properties of graphene—unique form of carbon—and how graphene-based fibers are fabricated, how to measure resistance, how to calculate resistivity, and how a material changes its electrical properties. Students also learn about the importance of defining design parameters, which is an… Read more
Lesson Plan Grade: 9th-12th
Educational Goal To understand: How polylactic acid (PLA) plastic is an example of green chemistry technology particularly pollution prevention and designing safer chemicals Student Objectives Students will: Learn about renewable "corn" plastic is made from polylactic acid Recycle the polylactic acid cup into a new product: a cleaning solution Conduct a saponification reaction Analyze PLA against the 12 principles of green chemistry (Optional) Verify the contents of their… Read more
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