Unit 4: Atomic and Molecular Models
Our last unit of the First Semester
pertains to Models for understanding atoms and molecules. The unit
begins with an exploration of quantum models of the atom and their
value in explaining chemical and physical properties. The second half
of the unit will look at the topic of bonding and make an effort to
explain why ionic and molecular compounds form with their specific
ratio of atoms.
Science Course Selection for 2017-18 School Year
During the Winter
break, I will be filling out a form for each student that gets sent to
your guidance counselor that indicates what science course you prefer
to take next year. It is only a recommendation; it does not lock you
into the course. You will need to let me know what course you are
interested in before Winter Break begins. I'd like to know your
decision by Thursday, December 20. You will submit a sheet of paper with your decision.
I'm Not Your Guidance Counselor, But ...
Hey Students! I'm not your guidance
counselor, but when it comes to recommending a science course for your
next two years of school at GBS, I might know a thing or two that your
counselor doesn't. For one, I know you're all STEM kids and I know that
means that you like science and other technical classes. I'd like to
recommend that thought be given to the following possibilities for your
next year's schedule:
STEM Biology paired with Digital Electronics (PLTW)
AP Biology (as an alternative to above and possibly even concurrent with any of the three below)
Honors Astronomy (1 semester awesome course, easily done with either of the above and any of the below. Do this one for Phun!)
AP Environmental Lab Science - a very do-able junior or senior year option
AP Chemistry - might be best done as a junior since
it's one year immediately after having had your Honors Chemistry
AP Physics - a great senior year option (requires Calculus course concurrently or previously)
Design and Development (EDD) ... the last course in the PLTW sequence -
a senior year option; must continue in PLTW course work to qualify for
this option during your senior year.
If you opt out of the STEM Biology
and Digital Electronics offering, then I'd recommend AP Chemistry your
Junior year followed by AP Biology and/or AP Physics your Senior Year.
Many SLC-ers who opted out of the program after their Sophomore year
choose Honors Biology ... a recognize freshman-level course. It is a great course ... for a
FRESHMAN. You will be a Junior. Every college in the nation knows this.
How do you
think the colleges that they apply to this coming year will view such a
decision? #JustSaying So I repeat: I do not recommend Honors Biology
(and I doubt your colleges will be impressed by such a selection).
you are all talented students and true STEM-mers. While many
of you undoubtedly have great talent in other academic domains, some of
you know that a science-engineering-math career is in your future.
Don't be bashful if you wish to overdose on our science and engineering
options. Some counselors might warn you against this, arguing that you
will become a little unbalanced for doing so and could grow a couple of
horns in the middle of your forehead. Those are words of a
non-science-minded guidance counselor. The words of your science
teacher are this: In 29 years of teaching, I've never seen a
science-minded student taking a bunch of science courses that they love
begin to grow alien body parts; rather, I've only seen very happy and
fulfilled science students who get to do the things they love doing.
You don't need anyone's permission to enroll in a lot of science
courses. If it's your thing, then go for it!
Our first semester science-engineering
project will be kicked off on Tuesday, December 12. The project involves
soap making. We will make, modify, improve, and evaluate a
soap. On the science side, it will be an exercise in variable control
and chemical reactions. On the engineering side, there will be some 3D
printing of a soap mold and the use of a motor to mix the reactants.
And finally, the project will involve the usual cycle of
make-modify-test-modify-test that is characteristic of both the
chemical engineering profession and any pursuit of engineering.
You will need to form project teams of three students.
Getting Down and Dirty with Soap Research
Since we are starting up our soap
project, it's time to get down and dirty with a little bit of soap
research. You should begin with how soap is made. And keep your eyes on
the look out for information about fats - one of the key ingredients in
soap. You will want to know what are good fats that can be used to make
soap. We will start with the dirt-cheap Lard on the first day of the
project. On lab Day #2, you will have to choose a different fat - cocoa
butter, coconut oil, palm oil, etc. And finally on Day #3 you will be
adding coloring and fragrances; so be on the hunt for information about
The links below are good starting points for your research:
The Chemistry Behind Soap Making
Let's Make Some Soap
How is Soap Made? One Word: Saponification
Soaps and Detergents: Chemistry
Chemistry Explained: Soap
The End is Near
Unit 4 Test has been rescheduled to Monday, December 18. The test will cover all
topics in Chapters 11 and 12. That's a lot of material.
An optional Review/Practice webassign has been posted and will prove to
be an excellent review for the test. The questions have been taken from
past assignments. A well-docmented packet is also a very good review
The test will include approximately 25 Mulitple Choice Questions and
five long-answer problems (diagramming/explaining). You will be allowed
60 minutes; extra time is not alloted.
You will be provided a Periodic Table, a table of electronegativity
values, and a list of all the possible names for electron pair geometry
and molecular geometry.
Guide to Polarity
The document that was used as a guide to determining the overall polarity of a molecule is available online:
View Guide to Polarity
Lab AMM4 - Molecular Geometry and Polarity
Lab AMM4 will utilize PhET's Molecular Shape Simulation
and be completed online using a Google Doc. The Google doc can be found
on Google Classroom and will be handed in on Google Classroom. The lab
is a partner lab with one write-up per twosome. No three-somes allowed. The due date is on December 20 at 8 AM
View the Quiz Key
from the most recent Unit 4 Quiz.
Mr. H's Little Secret
Pssss. Hey bud! I have a secret to
share. Now that you know how to calculate the molar mass, here's a
little cheat you should be permitted to use. It's called a Molar Mass
Calculator and you will find several by following the links below. You type in the
formula and it calculates the molar mass.
FREE: A Chemistry Study Tip
Stretching out your studies over a
lengthy period of time so that there are many "visits" of the material
is far better than lengthier, less-frequent sessions of intense
studies. So what's this have to do with Chemistry class? I'm going to
A little Chemistry each day helps. Your homework usually includes two
WebAssigns - one is a "looking ahead" WebAssign in which you read about
something that is coming up next. The other is a "looking behind"
WebAssign in which you practice using something that we just learned in
class. So why not do the "Looking behind" WebAssign on the evening of
the Blue day - the day you were presented with the material. And then
do the "Looking ahead" WebAssign on the evening of the Gold day - the
evening just prior to when we cover the material the next morning.
Hopefully that makes sense ... and it gives you a little Chemistry
every day. =SIGH=
Username: your ID#
Password: your call
page changes nearly every day; re-load
or refresh to receive the most recent schedule.
>> Thursday, December 14 <<
- What courses should I be taking next year (and the years to come)?
- What is the soap project all about?
- How do you determine the overall polarity of a molecule?
- Discuss Chapter 12.8-10 Reading Guide (pp. 39-40)
- Quick practice w/Overall Polarity (pp. 36-38)
- Discuss Course Recommendations for 2018-19
- Discuss Group Report for Soap Project
- Work on Lab AMM4
- Prepare for Unit 4 test
- Lab AMM4 (due at 8 AM on 12/20)
Time in Class
>> Monday, December 18 <<
will complete our discussion of course recommendations for 2018-19 school year. We will take the Unit 4 Test.