Polymers Teacher Resources

Find Polymers educational ideas and activities

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Students examine various polymers. In this polymers lesson, students perform three experiments with polymers to identify them and observe their interesting properties.
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.
In this polymer worksheet, students use an on line site to complete sentences about plastics, their chemical make-up, their uses, their history and information about recycling plastics.
Young scholars investigate the concept of polymers by conducting an experiment and participating in a role playing assignment. They pierce a balloon with a bamboo skewer and answer lab questions related to the concept about the spaces between the molecules.
Polymers make up nearly everything in the world around us; some are naturally occurring, while others are synthetic. Learn about how polymers form, what they are used for, and some of the potential environmental and health dangers of certain man-made polymers. Introduce your class to the wonderful and wacky world of polymers through a video and short assessment, then continue researching by following the links in the Dig Deeper section. 
Students identify that nature polymers like alginate from seaweed and that sodium alginate plus ions creates a slime that they can actually eat. They also identify and interpret that when sodium alginate and calcium acetate when water is added to them. Finally, students identify what the chemical name of their slime is.
Students complete a lab activity with polymers to allow them to better understand how to make "observations".  In this science activity students make measurements and collect data.
Using a step-by-step explanation of the process, this film shows how to use a wooden skewer to pierce a balloon without popping it. Your learners will love this demonstration and they will learn that polymer molecules can stretch and wrap around other objects.
Young scholars explore online tutorial on polymers. In this chemistry lesson, they create two polymers in the lab and compare their properties. They write a sales letter about their new and improved polymer product.
Students experiment with crystals and polymers and examine their roles in food science.
Fifth graders examine polymers and how they are formed.  In this chemistry instructional activity students complete their own polymer experiment then discuss what they learned. 
Students examine how some natural substances are polymers.  For this polymer lesson students complete a lab and give examples of a physical change. 
Students explore polymers by designing and preparing an inexpensive and effective reusable ice pack. They develop and test a design for a reusable ice pack in the science lab. Students apply chemical and physical properties of polymers and their uses while creating the ice pack.
Students explore physical properties of polymers through experiments. They test and compare the physical properties of thermoplastic polymers. When conducting the experiments, students follow listed safety guidelines.
Students add borax to a latex polymer and play with it to see the characteristics it now contains. In this polymer lesson plan, students see if it stretches, if it's durable, if the molecules break easily, and more.
This in-depth organic chemistry lab walks learners through an investigation of the effect of initiator concentration on the resulting molecular weight of polystyrene. It is important that you use this lesson with experienced chemistry learners as they will synthesize polystyrene several times and calculate efflux time and viscosity. Ideally you would use this when teaching your class about polymerization.
Chemists are stretched to their limits with a polymer instructional activity. They cut strips from a plastic shopping bag and hang weights from them to discover which holds the most. The also pull Velcro apart in a similar investigation. Thorough background information on polymers and plastics is provided, along with a photograph of the lab setup to make it more clear. You will also find student activity sheets and an assessment rubric.
First, young chemists practice polymer identification by density and flame tests. With the data collected, they propose a method of separating polyethylene from other plastics and determine what property makes it desirable for recycling. This laboratory activity is ideal when covering polymers in your general chemistry class.
A lively presentation presents general facts and history of nucleic acids in a note-taking format. Every slide contains colorful photos or graphics to illuminate and engage. Biology aces learn about the function and structure of these essential molecules. After showing this presentation, have them create models of the double helix out of various craft materials.
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!

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