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published by the American Chemical Society
written by Patti Galvan and Jim Kessler
This multimedia lesson by the American Chemical Society takes a close look at alcohol thermometers and what happens on a molecular level to make the liquid go up or down. In the hands-on experiment, students apply their understanding of how molecules move in hot and cold liquids. In addition, interactive animations provide visualizations of molecules moving within a solid, liquid, and gas. In the concluding task, students construct their own molecular models of the liquid in a thermometer. See Related Items for a link to an accompanying lesson on molecular motion.

Included in the lesson is a student activity sheet with answer key and suggested discussion questions.

Please note that this resource requires Flash.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
General Physics
- Properties of Matter
Modern Physics
- Atomic Physics
= Atomic Models
Other Sciences
- Chemistry
Thermo & Stat Mech
- Thermal Properties of Matter
= Temperature
= Thermal Expansion
= Thermometry
- Middle School
- Informal Education
- Instructional Material
= Curriculum
= Instructor Guide/Manual
= Interactive Simulation
= Lesson/Lesson Plan
= Problem/Problem Set
- Audio/Visual
= Movie/Animation
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Lesson Plan
- Activity
- Laboratory
- Assessment
- New teachers
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application/flash
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© 2010 American Chemical Society
Keywords:
chemistry animations, heat and temperature, liquids, molecular structure, states of matter, thermal properties, thermometer animation, thermometers
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created April 27, 2011 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
April 27, 2011 by Caroline Hall
Last Update
when Cataloged:
January 31, 2011

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

4. The Physical Setting

4D. The Structure of Matter
  • 6-8: 4D/M1a. All matter is made up of atoms, which are far too small to see directly through a microscope.
  • 6-8: 4D/M3ab. Atoms and molecules are perpetually in motion. Increased temperature means greater average energy of motion, so most substances expand when heated.
  • 6-8: 4D/M3cd. In solids, the atoms or molecules are closely locked in position and can only vibrate. In liquids, they have higher energy, are more loosely connected, and can slide past one another; some molecules may get enough energy to escape into a gas. In gases, the atoms or molecules have still more energy and are free of one another except during occasional collisions.
  • 6-8: 4D/M8. Most substances can exist as a solid, liquid, or gas depending on temperature.
  • 6-8: 4D/M10. A substance has characteristic properties such as density, a boiling point, and solubility, all of which are independent of the amount of the substance and can be used to identify it.

11. Common Themes

11B. Models
  • 6-8: 11B/M1. Models are often used to think about processes that happen too slowly, too quickly, or on too small a scale to observe directly. They are also used for processes that are too vast, too complex, or too dangerous to study.
  • 6-8: 11B/M6. A model can sometimes be used to get ideas about how the thing being modeled actually works, but there is no guarantee that these ideas are correct if they are based on the model alone.

This resource is part of a Physics Front Topical Unit.


Topic: Heat and Temperature
Unit Title: The Relationship Between Heat and Temperature

This multimedia activity from the American Chemical Society takes a close look at what's happening on a molecular level to make the liquid in an alcohol thermometer go up or down. Animations provide visualizations of molecules moving in a solid, liquid, and gas. The module also includes a hands-on experiment and a lab where kids construct their own molecular models.

Link to Unit:
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Record Link
AIP Format
P. Galvan and J. Kessler, (American Chemical Society, Washington DC, 2010), WWW Document, (http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3).
AJP/PRST-PER
P. Galvan and J. Kessler, Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers (American Chemical Society, Washington DC, 2010), <http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3>.
APA Format
Galvan, P., & Kessler, J. (2011, January 31). Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers. Retrieved August 21, 2014, from American Chemical Society: http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3
Chicago Format
Galvan, Patti, and Jim Kessler. Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers. Washington DC: American Chemical Society, January 31, 2011. http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3 (accessed 21 August 2014).
MLA Format
Galvan, Patti, and Jim Kessler. Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers. Washington DC: American Chemical Society, 2010. 31 Jan. 2011. 21 Aug. 2014 <http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Patti Galvan and Jim Kessler", Title = {Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers}, Publisher = {American Chemical Society}, Volume = {2014}, Number = {21 August 2014}, Month = {January 31, 2011}, Year = {2010} }
Refer Export Format

%A Patti Galvan
%A Jim Kessler
%T Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers
%D January 31, 2011
%I American Chemical Society
%C Washington DC
%U http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Galvan, Patti
%A Kessler, Jim
%D January 31, 2011
%T Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers
%I American Chemical Society
%V 2014
%N 21 August 2014
%8 January 31, 2011
%9 text/html
%U http://www.middleschoolchemistry.com/lessonplans/chapter1/lesson3


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Middle School Chemistry: The Ups and Downs of Thermometers:

Is Associated With Middle School Chemistry: Molecules in Motion

This related lesson by the same authors explores factors that affect molecular motion in liquids, solids, and gases. It would be appropriate to do PRIOR to the lesson on thermometers.

relation by Caroline Hall

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