STEM Chemistry at GBS
The Laboratory

Home || Schedules || Laboratory || File Cabinet || Quiz Room || Helpful Resources

Unit 1: Fundamentals of Chemistry Notebook Labs

View Scoring Rubric

The following items should be in the Unit 1 portion of your notebook.  They should be clearly organized and easy to find.  Use an organizational system and label all work. Each lab will be graded separately.  All lab grades will be entered into the gradebook. 




Lab FC1. Measurement

Question:
How does the measuring tool effect the measurement made of mass, length and volume? What is certainty and how is it related to the number of significant digits?

Purpose:
To become acquainted with important principles associated with measurement, including significant digits

Safety:
This lab will be done as a demonstration lab;  the teacher will be able to control the safety of the environment.

This is a unique lab in that it will not be written up in our lab notebook. You will have a sheet of paper that you will complete and tape into your lab notebook.





Lab FC2. Lab in a Bag

Question:
What are the changes that occur when four chemicals (one teaspoon of calcium chloride, 1/2 teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate, 5 mL of an aqueous solution of phenol red indicator) are mixed?  Which substance(s) is responsible for the observed changes?

Purpose:
To describe the changes which occur when four chemicals (see Question section above) are mixed and to conduct systematic testing to determine which substances are responsible for each observed change.

Safety:
Calcium chloride is slightly toxic by ingestion.  Phenol red is a dye solution and can stain skin and clothing upon contact.  Laying face down in water for a few minutes can be fatal.  Avoid contact of all chemicals with skin and eyes.  Wear goggles at all times. Wash your hands with soap and water before leaving the lab.

Disposal:
Contents of plastic bag can be drained down the sink; plastic bags can be tossed into the garbage can at the end of the period.

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should clearly document the activities performed (i.e., the chemicals which were mixed) and the corresponding observations.  The results of the original test and all follow-up tests should be fully documented.  The Conclusion/Discussion answer the question posed in the Purpose.  It should describe the changes which occur and identify the substances or combination of substances which are responsible for each of these changes. The evidence and logic which supports the conclusions must be described.




Lab FC3. Dense Cents

Question:
What is the density value of pre- and post-1982 pennies?  How do their density values compare?  How can the difference be explained?

Purpose:
To use a plot of mass vs. volume to determine and compare the density value of pre- and post-1982 pennies and to explain the difference between their density values.

Safety:
The materials in this lab are considered nonhazardous when used in their intended manner (though the love of money can be the root of many evils).  Follow all normal lab safety rules.

Disposal:
The water can be disposed of down the drain (of course).  The pennies should be dried with a paper towel for use by later sections.

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should include an organized table of measured data with column headings, a sketch or print-out of the mass vs. volume graphs (with mass along the vertical axis), and the results of a linear regression analysis (slope, y-intercept, regression constant). The Conclusion/Discussion should include a complete answer to the questions posed in the Purpose of the lab.





Lab FC4. Hey Sugar!

Question:
What is the percent sugar in some specifically tested beverage solutions?

Purpose:
To compare the densities of several beverage solutions to five reference solutions in order to determine the percent sugar in two beverage samples.

Safety:
Do not mouth pipet the beverages and do not drink these beverages (or any other) in a lab environment.  Follow all normal lab safety rules.

Disposal:
Pour all solutions down the drain.

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should include an organized table of all measured and calculated data for the five reference solutions and for the two tested beverage samples.  A density vs. % sugar plot should be constructed (using Graphical Analysis) for the five reference solutions and included as a taped in printout in the Data section. The theoretical value for the percent sugar should be reported.  Percent error calculation should be performed for each beverage; work should be shown. The Conclusion/Discussion section should (as always) include the answer to the question posed in the Purpose of the lab (the Claim). The Conclusion/Discussion section should also explain the evidence and the reasoning which led to the stated conclusion; that is, discuss how the data and graph allowed you to arrive at the claim. Make a good argument.






Lab FC5. Separating Mixtures Lab

Question:
What is the percent composition by mass of salt, sand, and iron in a mixture of these three components?

Purpose:
To determine the percent composition (by mass) of salt, sand and iron in a mixture of the three components.

Safety:
Wear goggles at all times.  Use common sense (e.g., never ingest chemicals in lab). Avoid rough-housing. 

Disposal:
Uncontaminated iron can be returned to the vial.  Undissolved solids should never be poured down the drain; instead, they should be placed in a garbage can.  A mixture of salt, sand and water can be filtered;  the solid should be collected and dried and the filtrate should be drained.

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should include all measurements, recorded with the proper number of significant digits and appropriate unit.  The Data section should also include a clear documentation of all calculations.  They should be organized, labeled, and expressed with a unit to the proper number of significant digits.  The Conclusion should include a single statement which responds to the question posed in the Purpose of the lab.






Lab FC6. Mendeleev for a Day

Question:
What process or organization scheme is used in the arrangement of elements of the periodic table?

Purpose:
To use data about 20 known elements in order to organize the elements in rows and columns according to their masses and the similarity of their properties and to describe the organizational rules used to arrange the elements into a organized table.

Safety:
There are no safety concerns associated with this activity (other than the use of adult scissors).

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should include the securement (via tape or glue) of the 20 element cards (landscape orientation preferred) in an organized pattern to your notebook page.  Notes should be included in the table which describes the organizational rule for their placement into rows and the organizational rule for their placement in columns.  The Conclusion/Discussion should describe the procedure which was used to arrange the twenty elements. 






Lab FC7. Metals, Nonmetals, and Metalloids

Question:
Based on the observations of the chemical and physical properties of a collection of elements, which are metals?  Which are nonmetals?  Which are metalloids?

Purpose:
To use observations of appearance (luster), brittleness/malleability, conductivity and chemical reactivity (with acids and with CuCl2) in order to classify a collection of unknown elements as being either metals, nonmetals and metalloids.

Safety:
Hydrochloric acid is corrosive to skin and eyes. Copper(II) chloride solution is slightly toxic by ingestion. All the element samples can be handled safely.Wash your hands before leaving the lab.

Disposal/Clean up:

Solids are never disposed of down the drain;  instead they should be placed into the garbage can.  Solutions can be rinsed down the drain with lots of water.  The lab tables should be thoroughly rinsed, and cleaned before leaving the lab.

A complete lab write-up includes a Title, a Purpose, a Data section, and a Conclusion/Discussion.  The Data section should include a table with labeled columns and rows which is used to organize your observations of the tests of all elements;  observations should be clearly documented.  The Conclusion/Discussion should classify all unknowns into one of three categories and describe the evidence of the classification decision.










Home || Schedules || Laboratory || File Cabinet || Quiz Room || Helpful Resources