Poly and Mer Physical Science UnitsStudents experience hands on and interactive learning in the following physical science areas:

Energy and Matter Request-a-presentation

In this module, the students will be able to describe the effects of adding energy to matter. They will be able to explain phase changes in terms of motion and how energy is transferred by conduction, convection and radiation. Students will be able to describe the general structure of an atom and how the properties of the first 20 elements are related to their atomic structure. Students will also be able to explain ionic and covalent bonding. Students will design and conduct experiments to investigate phase changes in water and to investigate a factor that contributes to the effectiveness of a solar cooker in heating water.
Suggested grade level: Middle and High School

Polymers and Plastics

Request-a-presentation

In this module, students will be able to explain how the structure of the carbon atom affects the types of bonds it forms and explain how the chemical structure of polymers affects their physical properties. They will describe combustion reactions of hydrocarbons and the resulting by-products. Students will be able to explain the general formation and structure of carbon-based polymers, linear, branched, and cross-linked polymers. They will design and conduct experiments to investigate a synthetic polymer and how the polymer can be processed to produce products with different characteristics.
Suggested grade level: Middle and High School

Global Systems

Request-a-presentation

In this module, students will be able to explain the short and long term impacts of landfills and how incineration of waste materials affects the quality of the environment. Students will be able to explain how physical and chemical processes cause carbon to cycle through the earth, explain how solar energy causes water to cycle through the earth, and explain how accumulation of mercury, phosphates, and nitrates affects the quality of water and organisms. They will also be able to explain the chemical composition of acids and bases and the changes of pH in neutralization reactions. Students will design and conduct an experiment to investigate the effect of acid rain on various building materials in order to make a recommendation to the town council as to the best material to use for a new statue.
Suggested grade level: Middle and High School

Environmental Impact Request-a-presentation

In this module, students will be able to explain how land development, transportation options and consumption of resources may affect the environment. They will also describe how humans try to reduce the consumption of raw materials and improve air and water quality. Students will design and conduct experiments to investigate the greenhouse effect.
Suggested grade level: Middle and High School

Energy Use

In this module, students will be able to explain how heat is used to generate electricity. They will be able to describe the relationship among voltage, current and resistance in a simple series circuit, and explain how electricity is used to produce heat and light in incandescent bulbs and heating elements. Students will describe the relationship between current and magnetism. They will also be able to describe the availability, current uses and environmental issues related to the use of hydrogen fuel cells, wind and solar energy to produce electricity.
Suggested grade level: Middle and High School
Request-a-presentation
 
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