This page links to resources supporting various units in general chemistry, intended primarily for students in the IBO’s Middle Years Programme, but also applicable for Diploma Programme and Advanced Placement students. Here you’ll find a collection of class presentations, videos, and links to simulations, animations, and other digital resources useful for the study of the chemical patterns of our world.
Because the MYP approaches science conceptually (rather than through the memorization of facts), each of our units of study focuses on one of the key concepts of systems, relationships, or change. Each unit uses related concepts, such as energy, movement, transformation, and models to strengthen and deepen students’ understanding of the content.
If the scientific concepts of each unit are what students should know, then the skills in each unit comprise what students should be able to do. MYP science skills can be broadly categorized into two categories: 1) designing, conducting, and evaluating scientific investigations, and 2) reflecting on the ways science impacts society. The content in some units is particularly suited for lab or field experiments, while other content is more approachable via reflection.
Units of Study
- Measurements, accuracy, and precision
- Nature of matter and atomic structure
- Meet the elements – an introduction to the periodic table
- Periodicity (patterns)
- Bonding and chemical reactions
- Stoichiometry – the art and science of chemical equations
- Gas Laws
- Acids and bases
General Chemistry Resources
- PTable.com. Hands down the best periodic table on the internet. Period.
- Chemistry.about.com. A good, all-around general chemistry resource. They’ve updated the site format to include news and events, which may tie in nicely with MYP Criterion D: Reflecting on the impacts of science.
- LibreTexts virtual chemistry textbooks. These are some fairly advanced materials which may be more appropriate for students in Diploma Program or AP chemistry classes. Organized around broad topics such as analytical chemistry, environmental chemistry, organic chem, and physical and theoretical chemistry.
- IB Chemistry Web. This site appears to be meticulously maintained, and it’s closely aligned with the new IB Chemistry syllabus. Heavy on text, but a tremendous amount of resources for every part of the course.
- PCCL Flash animations for learning chemistry. These aren’t fancy animations, but they clearly and simply demonstrate a bunch of key topics in general chemistry.
- Molecular Workbench. Hundreds of engaging, interactive simulations in chemistry (and other subjects). Many include embedded assessments, and you can build your own simulation if you really get into it. You can spend hours with the MW.
- Cavalcade o’ Chemistry (a.k.a. ChemFiesta). Mr Guch’s incredible chemistry page. He’s been maintaining this page since the late 1990s, and it gets better and better each year. Supremely helpful for middle school and early high school students. He also has a special section just for teachers.
- Practical chemistry activities from the Nuffield Foundation. Over 200 activities you can do to teach or learn about chemistry. Some are virtual, but many require a science lab.
- Behind the Scenes at MIT. As the website tagline says, “A series of two-minute videos relating concepts from textbook chemistry to current MIT research and applications in medicine, the environment, and energy.” A nice way for students to see the real-world applications of what’s happening in the lab and the classroom.
- Off the Shelf Chemistry. A series of 18 chemistry labs for middle school and high school. Download PDF or Word versions to use in your own class/lab.
- Chemlab.com from Truman State University. This website hosts the course materials for several university-level chemistry courses, but many of them are appropriate and applicable for high school.
- Periodic Videos from TED-Ed. “A lesson about every single element on the periodic table.” Enough said.
Science Humor: Chemistry
I did not create these images, and for many of them I don’t even have a source. They’ve just come into my life one way or another over the years, and I enjoy sharing them with my students. So, if any of them are yours, please contact me and I will give credit where credit is due. In the meantime, enjoy!
Of course, no chemistry humor collection is complete without the world-famous Chemistry Cat: