When am I ever going to need chemistry?

Format
Bianca Mercuri

How does this align with my curriculum?

Students will be introduced to careers where chemistry is relevant to everyday life and will explore chemicals in familiar household products.

Summary

  • Students will identify and describe a variety of careers related to chemistry
  • Students will identify practical applications of chemistry in everyday life
  • Students will develop science literacy skills by reading ingredient labels and evaluating marketing claims of everyday products
Specific Expectations for Ontario

Science, Grade 10, Applied (SNC2P)
A2.1 identify and describe a variety of careers related to the fields of science under study and the education and training necessary for these careers.
C1.2 identify practical applications of chemical reactions in a particular profession (e.g., ceramics, cosmetology, firefighting, heating and cooling system technology, food preparation, plumbing, custodial services), and assess the associated hazards, including hazards associated with the handling and disposal of chemicals.

Setting the Stage

Chemistry is all around us and is involved in everything we do. Especially in our homes. From the food we eat, to the products that we use for self care and from the medicines that help us feel better to the products that we use for cleaning. Yet many students still ask the question, “when will I ever need to know this?” In this lesson, students will be challenged in different ways to consider careers which use chemistry and to observe a wide variety of applications of chemistry in life beyond the chemistry classroom.

Materials & Preparation

  • Ability to show a YouTube video
  • Computers or tablets with internet access (1 per student)
  • Laptop and projector or interactive white board for teacher (optional)
  • Chart paper and markers (1 set per small group of students)(optional)
  • Pens or pencils (optional)
  • A variety of common household products with ingredient labels (i.e. food, personal care, make-up, medicine, cleaning) (one set per small group) **Alternatively, provide students with photographs of the labels rather than the products themselves**
  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Brainstorm Prompts Reproducible (to be provided to students or projected to the class) [Google doc] [PDF]
  • Chemistry and Household Products Reproducible (one per group or per student) [Google doc] [PDF] - paper copy or e-copy
  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Exit Slip Reproducible (1 per student) [Google doc] [PDF] - paper copy or e-copy

What To Do

Activate

Acquire

  • To facilitate discussion, teachers could provide students with the Brainstorming Prompts reproducible or project the page on a screen.
  • Teachers could ask students to get into small groups (2-3 students) and use the chart paper and markers provided or an online collaborative whiteboard such as miro, conceptboard or Mindmeister, to brainstorm and jot down areas of day-to-day life, industries and careers in which a basic understanding of chemistry is important. It is important that this be done without the use of the internet.
  • One student from each group could share the brainstormed ideas with the larger group as the teacher jots them down on the projected brainstorming/prompt worksheet.
  • Teachers could now ask students to rejoin their groups and research/brainstorm other less obvious careers where the knowledge of chemistry is relevant.
  • One student from each group could share the researched/brainstormed ideas with the larger group as the teacher jots them down on the projected brainstorming/prompt worksheet for all to see.

Apply

  • Teachers should distribute the work package entitled Chemistry and Household Product either on paper or digitally.
  • Students can work individually or in groups to complete parts A to D. A computer may be needed to look up some terminology.
  • For part E, one student from each group can select a household product or label from a household product from those provided by the teacher to bring back to their group. If doing the activity digitally, a teacher could provide product links to students such as:

**This is not an exhaustive list and is not an endorsement of any companies or brands**

If students are handling actual products, review WHMIS and HHPS symbols.

  • Groups will complete Exploring Some Household Products in part E and then present their information using visuals, graphic organizers, drawings or any method they choose.

Let’s Talk Science appreciates the work and contributions of Bianca Mercuri from Michael Power/St. Joseph High School, Toronto Catholic District School Board in the development of this lesson.

Details

Assessment

  • Students can complete the When am I ever going to need chemistry? Exit Slip to reflect on their learning
  • Teachers could conduct a final large group discussion to debrief students from the lesson and summarize some of their exit slip reflections
  • Teachers could assess student work on the Chemistry and Household Products assignment

Assessment

  • Students can complete the When am I ever going to need chemistry? Exit Slip to reflect on their learning
  • Teachers could conduct a final large group discussion to debrief students from the lesson and summarize some of their exit slip reflections
  • Teachers could assess student work on the Chemistry and Household Products assignment

Downloads

  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Brainstorm Prompts [Google doc] [PDF]
  • Chemistry and Household Products [Google doc] [PDF
  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Exit Slip [Google doc] [PDF

Downloads

  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Brainstorm Prompts [Google doc] [PDF]
  • Chemistry and Household Products [Google doc] [PDF
  • When am I ever going to need chemistry? Exit Slip [Google doc] [PDF

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