Using Green to Catalyze the Changing of The World

byRajendra Jaini
This four week High School Chemistry unit is designed to teach first semester Chemistry fundamentals in an innovative way that will catalyze students to become impassioned scientists or scientific-related participants in the Green Chemistry revolution. Green Chemistry is about inventing, designing, and creating products and systems that will be sustainable into the future; after all, why fix problems later that we can engineer solutions for today? To help students visualize possibilities, the four lesson unit will scaffold students' knowledge and culminate with an interactive investigative science game in which the students are the participants in helping convict drug kingpin Ibu Profen Brufen (a.k.a. 'The Headache') using quantitative and qualitative evidence. Concepts reviewed and introduced include, Reactants, Products, Reactions, Reaction Types, Gram Formula Mass, Stoichiometric Dimensional Analysis, Atom Economy, and E-Factor; these concepts are 'hidden' in a case study of Ibuprofen, which is just one example of how innovative Green Chemistry processes are changing the world. Through these innovative lessons, I hope to reactivate the curiosity and passion for science and learning that has been so often lost amongst the urban youth we serve; from these reactivated curiosities, I hope to create active future participants that will Change the World.

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