Energy and Entropy of a Stretched Rubber Band

This Energy and Entropy of a Stretched Rubber Band activity & project also includes:

Stephen Perry invented and patented the modern rubber band in 1845. Young scientists put his discovery to work as they use rubber bands to observe entropy and enthalpy. They determine the change in free energy to figure out if it produces an endothermic or exothermic reaction.

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CCSS: Adaptable
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Instructional Ideas

  • Find the average enthalpy and free energy for the entire class and discuss the range of results
Classroom Considerations

  • Ensure everyone wears goggles, as the likelihood of a rubber band breaking on someone's face is high
  • Assumes prior knowledge of the scientific definition of spontaneous
  • This resource is only available on an unencrypted HTTP website. It should be fine for general use, but don’t use it to share any personally identifiable information

  • Reflection questions use higher-level thinking skills
  • Includes a photo of the proper way to hold the rubber band

  • None