Teaching Born Haber Cycles

I must admit, this is not my favourite topic to teach but it’s something I am working at. What I want to focus on here is not necessarily the cycle – I’m assuming you are OK with this. I’d rather focus this blog post on two other trends that can be identified using the data book: How lattice enthalpies vary according to: Size of the ion Charge of the ion I will also be referring to table 18 of the data book, ...

Become a Future Science Leader!

No matter whether you’re an aspiring Biologist, Physicist, Chemist, or inventor, the IB Diploma is a fantastic stepping stone to studying your subject at university. However, an ambitious student can be left directionless with so many choices and questions – which subject should I follow? How do I break in to the science industry? With that question in mind our academics set about creating the perfect course for aspirant scientists - “Future Science Leader”. What is it? Future Science Leaders is a new ...

Biochemistry Option B – London forces in fat and oils (Lipids topic)

Firstly, before I forget, a very Happy New Year to all of my readers, wherever in the world you may be! Lipids are covered in the Biochemistry Option (Option B). They are large organic molecules that are not soluble in water. They are studies as they have a number of different uses in living systems, for example triglycerides (fats and oils), phospholipids (cell membranes) and cholesterol. Fats and oils have essentially to same overall structure. The difference between them is that fats ...

Osmium (Os)

By Wednesday, January 18, 2017 , , 0

Osmium (Os), is a metal found in IUPAC group 8, with a relative atomic mass of 190.2. Just over 12 years ago the BBC1 announced that intelligence agents in the UK and USA had foiled a plot to make a 'dirty bomb' that would have involved the explosion of Osmium Oxide (OsO4). What was slightly unusual about this new article was that it did acknowledge that Osmium Oxide was extremely expensive and only really available to research institutions. In other words, ...

The Examiners Report from the May 2016 Session

The examiners report from the May session is now out. Have you managed to see it / read it? As ever, the report does not ‘look very use friendly’ - it’s just a heap of text! But the contents of it can be quite revealing. The main highlights for me were: 1, The grade boundaries. If I’m honest, I did think they would be lower than this, due to my perception that the course is ‘harder’. In reality, the examinations were not too tricky ...

Colour

Topic 13 is one of my favourites – how do you find it? In this topic, we start to explore complex ions the reasons why these ions are coloured. How do you deal with this topic. I like the fact that it is very visual. It can make a nice transition from topic 3 which is very theoretical –after a couple of weeks of topic 3 theory, the students are usually ready for some lab work! Do you carry out lab work? I like ...

Nh, Mc, Ts, Og

Do these letters mean anything to you?  I expect not so please don’t worry if you have not seen them before. That said, they are the symbols for the most recent addition of elements to the periodic table. To give these new elements their official names (and proton numbers) we have: Nihonium (Nu) – 113 Moscovium (Mc) – 115 Tennessine (Ts) – 117 Oganesson (Og) – 118 What is interesting about the choice of names is that in a change from previous ‘new’ elemental names Ts ...

C3L6 (Cambridge Chemistry Challenge)

Have you heard of the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge? If not, it is definitely worth a look (http://c3l6.com). The website is primarily aimed at UK students in the ‘lower 6th’ – this is equivalent of IB1 but the chemistry itself is very worthy of all IB students and is open to students in the UK and from around the world. In order to fully access the website you will need to register (for free) – if you don’t want to do this though, ...

Seeing Forces

Try asking your physics teacher if this is possible - they will probably give you all sorts of (boring) physics examples – for example, gravity pulling down on a book or a boat floating or an airplane flying. But I can guarantee that none of them well tell you to look at a cup of full water. If you set the following example up correctly, it can be really visual and impressive plus it can teach you a little about Hydrogen bonds ...

Approaches To Learning Flipped

ATL flipped? What an earth does this mean? Last month I wrote a post on the IB’s ideas about how you, the student should approach your learning in class – this is what is termed the ‘Approaches to Learning’ and it forms part of a wider focus on the IB called ‘Approaches to Teaching and Learning’ or ‘ATL’. If you remember, the IB said that you, the student should approach learning using one of five different techniques – Thinking Skills Communication Skills, ...