Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Free Chemistry Resources

A few days ago, someone on the WTM Boards asked about a free elementary chemistry program, Inquiry in Action. I saved a copy of this several months ago, hoping to use it sometime in the future with a small group of appropriately aged kids. My own are too big now.

I have become convinced that inquiry is the way to present science to children. I also think scientific inquiry is best done in small groups rather than with a single homeschooled kid. Peer interaction is essential, I think. And the adult needs to be more facilitator than teacher. I did this 2 years ago with 4 kids, 10 to 13 yo. I used Teaching Physics with Toys by Taylor, Poth and Portman as the outline for our activities. I enjoyed it and I think they did, too. Inquiry in Action would have been wonderful to use with my group.

Because traffic to the online book site from the WTM board picked up substantially, an employee of the American Chemical Society joined the board and responded. He mentioned a new middle school text, also free online. Although I need to spend some more time with it, this text looks very useful as well. And I was stimulated to look at the ACS website and of course there are wonderful resources there as well. I'll link them.

Inquiry in Action

Middle School Chemistry

On the ACS website, there is so much material I can only link a few. Just go look.

Cool Science where there are links to some ChemMatters articles such as Chemistry of Fireworks and Chemistry in the Kitchen.

ChemMatters, a quarterly journal for high school students. I love to read this myself.

Science for Kids, with activities for younger kids.

And Reel Science, a site with reviews of science in movies such as Inception and Food, Inc. This looks great.

Enjoy science. PRM

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