Physical vs Chemical Changes: Pancake Day
I’m moving chemistry away from bangs and smells and toward stuff that fits with their everyday experience – food science, yum.
It was a wild day and I’ve only just finished fishing melted chocolate chips out of the sinks, I’m tired but see for yourselves the enthusiasm of my normally cool 8th graders – I think they get the difference between physical and chemical changes, plus a nice intro to acid/base reactions.
Here’s the sheet we used: 1 The Pancake Lab Phys Chem changes with the recipies and ‘The Science of Pancakes’ from “Cook’s Illustrated Magazine”
Day 1: Have students sort Concept Construxion cards by chemical vs physical changes, chemical and physical properties. Nice review of conductivity and of density by the way.
Show the beautifully produced 5minute video clip from NBC Learn chemistry series. Then demo the individual parts of the recipe.
Day 2: Pancake day! Think tiny little frying pans over bunsens. Sweet.
I thought about how to manage all the equipment, the fire and burn dangers, the mess and stickiness ahead of time and still had to perfect it over the day. But no one got burned, no one died and the superintendent and the principal visited and I still have my job. If you want help with how to set up and safety, let me know and we’ll chat.
H added chocolate chips, what an idea – kids brought them in by themselves. Next year that’ll make it easier and amazingly delicious.
S is inspired by this lab and wants to do more stuff like this at home. She’s a chef of tomorrow, and maybe SC too.
Just deserts. I’m hungry, time for dinner.