So I had so much fun with the high school acids and bases lab last week I decided to do a simpler version with the middleschoolers today.  I actually found an old keynote presentation on acids and bases that I had made a few years ago so I showed that to the kids in the beginning of class. It mainly pointed out why acids/bases are important, how changes is soil pH can affect plants,  acid rain and its affect on trees, lakes, fish and even statues.  It also had a few slides on pH levels in the human body and our blood is very picky about its pH level and small changes can make you sick or even cause death.

I also showed these two videos before we started the lab.

I didn’t show this one in class but the last slide of  my presentation mentioned these whip scorpions shoot acetic acid for self defense.  Here’s a slow motion video of them doing just that.  

I bought an interactive notebook lift the flap thing on acids and bases from teacerspayteachers (Bond with James) because I was too lazy to make my own and it was only a few dollars. You can see it in the lower left of the photo below.  I also gave the kids a photo of cabbage indicator for different pHs to compare with their solutions.  I made the blank test tubes you see on the right page for kids to color and record the pH value for various household items.

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As you can see in the following photo, the students got a wide range of colors.  These 50ml centrifuge tubes worked great for this lab because they’re big enough that pouring into them isn’t as difficult as a narrow test tube and they have measurements on them so it was easy for them to put roughly 15ml of cabbage indicator into each one.img_8495

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