Lesson Plans and Worksheets
Browse by Subject
- Jenna H., Teacher
Polymers Teacher Resources
Find Polymers educational ideas and activities
Students explore polymer properties. For this lesson about polymers, students perform an experiment to understand polymers, their properties, and that they are formed from small molecules. Students role play pretending they are polymer molecules, examine polymer models, and make their own "silly putty". Students watch a final demonstration by the teacher.
Students recognize the meaning of a polymer and how they are synthesized and observe and compare the properties and phases of both synthetic and natural polymers. They conduct experiments in which they synthesize a variety of polymers and present their findings in a group Power Point presentation.
Students investigate polymers by completing 3 experiments. In this polymer lesson plan, students mix plastic with acetone, they create polyurethane foam, they make slime and build a polymer model once their polyurethane foam is set. They also make any sort of shape with their polystyrene cup and complete a worksheet identifying the polymers in their home.
Eighth graders investigate chemical reactions to produce polymers. In this polymers lesson plan, 8th graders experiment with sodium silicate and ethyl alcohol to make a polymer. They also experiment with borax and glue to make a polymer. Students record observations and properties of the reactants and products and answer 7 questions about their discoveries.
Two scenarios are presented for chemistry detectives to decipher. Both require the use of an infrared spectrometer and focus on the examination of polymer materials. In the first, lumps in polyethylene bottles are analyzed. In the second, two specific brands of plastic food wrap are compared. Lab groups can choose from one of these two open-ended science inquiries. They are both terrific lessons for studying properties of polymers, spectroscopy, or simply practicing the scientific process.
A polymer investigation is on the horizon and here are four separate learning activities to do the job. The resource provides background information for the teacher and a wonderful analogy to help learners understand polymers and plastics. It also provides four activities each with full instructions, images, discussion, and added information. Kids can make a Borax bouncy ball, investigate sodium alginate and molecular gastronomy, work with recyclable plastics, and play with those super cool diaper hydrogels. No matter how you use this resource, your class will be engaged and learning about polymers!
A succinct set of slides introduces upcoming chemists to the building blocks of life. The special properties of carbon are explained so that viewers understand why life is based on this molecule. Biomolecules (protein, lipid, carbohydrate, and nucleic acid) are introduced as polymers. Condensation and hydrolysis reactions are investigated. A terrific way to follow this presentation would be to have your class build models of carbon-based polymer molecules! By the way, this is not only useful for your chemists, but biology learners would also benefit from this resource.
Young scholars investigate plastics and learn they are giant molecules made of carbon atoms. For this polymers and plastics lesson, students perform 3 activities which all include making polymers from household items such as milk and vinegar, glue and borax and acetone and foam peanuts.
Students use short-chain polymers and borate ions to produce cross-linked polymers in the lab. In this cross-linked polymer lesson plan, students produce polyvinyl acetate slime and polyvinyl alcohol slime and test their physical properties. Students answer 6 questions about their investigation results and about cross-linked polymers.
Seventh graders investigate the concept of polymers. They discover unique properties and how polymers are natural. The lesson contains sufficient background information for the teacher. Students examine different types of materials and complete a KWL chart during the experiment.