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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.

Soap Project

Our first semester science-engineering project will be kicked off on Wednesday, December 12. The project involves soap making. We will make, modify, improve, market, 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 be assigned project teams of 3-4 students.

Course Selection for 2018-19

We will be discussing science course selections for your Junior year. The following graphic will guide our discussion.

View Graphic.

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 that.

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

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 4 PM. More details coming soon.

Lab Notebooks

Lab Notebooks will be collected on Tuesday, December 20. The following labs will be graded:

Lab QCC4 - Copper and Silver Nitrate Lab (5 pts)

Lab AMM1 - Elemental Fingerprinting (3 pts)

PhET: Molecular Shapes Simulation (taped in sheet of paper)  (4 pts)

Unit 4 Quiz Return

The Unit 4 Quiz will be returned on Monday, December 10. View Quiz Key. Additional makeups will be placed in the Test Center on Tuesday or Wednesday.

The End is Near

End is nearOur Unit 4 Test has been rescheduled to Tuesday, 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 tool.

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.

Link for December 4/6 Lesson

We will use a PhET simulation on Tuesday (12/4). The link is below:

Molecular Shape

Lab AMM1 - Elemental Fingerprinting

Our first lab experience is Lab AMM1 - Elemental Fingerprinting. We will observe the line spectrum of four elemets and match the observed spectra to a database of known spectra in order to identify the element. You will find the database of known spectra here:

Some Informative Videos

A list of informative videos (some of which will be shown in class) will be kept here. More can be found on a separate page here.

Keep Up

Don't fall behind in chemistry at this point. The snowball effect will occur.

That is, you will feel like you're running down a snowy hill with a rolling snowball rolling behind you. The further you go, the bigger the snowball becomes until finally ... .

Hopefully, you get my drift.

Come in and get some help when you need it. Use the referenced web pages and YouTube videso as well. (I highly recommend Tyler DeWitt's YouTube channel.)

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.

WebQC Chemical Portal (one of my favorites)

EndMemo (allows formula or name entry)

Environmental Chemistry (scroll to bottom)

Molecular Weight Calculator by Lenntech

or Google, e.g. molar mass Al2(SO4)3

    Online Homework


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Today in Class

>> Wednesday, December 12 <<

Focus Question(s):
  • How do you make soap?
  • What is the soap project all about?

  • Quickly: Polarity Review on pp. 36-38
  • Discuss Soap Project
  • Day 1 of Soap Lab (standard formula)
  • As time allows: discuss Course Recommendations for 2018-19 (???)

  • WebAssign: Chapter 12.8-10 Polarity
  • WebAssign: Unit 4 Review (optional)
  • Select unique fat for inclusion in Day 2 recipe
  • Email teacher regarding selected oil for Day 2 Soap Lab by Monday

Next Time in Class

>> Friday, December 14 <<

We will discuss the Unit 4 test. We will discuss polarity and complete Lab AMM4 (Google doc). We will discuss the Soap Project and conduct some tests on commercial soap samples.

Periodic Tables

Are you in need of a periodic table?  Try one of the following websites:

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