Organic chemistry – pupil resources

This collection of classroom resources features all the pupil activities from our Developing expertise in teaching organic chemistry course for teachers. This collection is most valuable to those who have attended this course and wish to put into practice with their students some of the ideas and activities presented as part of that event.


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The conversion of alcohols to halogenoalkanes

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Ethanol is reacted with phosphorus tribromide in a substitution reaction to give bromoethane.

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AfL: Nucleophilic substitution reaction mechanisms

Assessment for Learning is an effective way of actively involving students in their learning.  Each session plan comes with suggestions about how to organise activities and worksheets that may be used with students.

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A microscale oxidation of alcohols

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In this experiment you will be testing various alcohols to see whether they can be oxidised by a solution of acidified potassium dichromate.

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Making esters from alcohols and acids

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Investigate the reactions between a range of alcohols and acids on a test-tube scale, by producing small quantities of a variety of esters quickly.

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A microscale acid-base titration

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In this experiment you will be using microscale titration apparatus to complete an acid-base neutralisation. The aim is to calculate the exact concentration of sodium hydroxide solution.

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Using a microscale conductivity meter

Let your students test which solids and solutions/liquids conduct electricity with a microscale conductivity meter

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Electrolysis using a microscale Hoffman apparatus

Investigate the electrolysis of sodium sulphate solution using a microscale Hoffman apparatus

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Formation of TCP (2,4,6-trichlorohydroxybenzene)

Prepare a distinctive-smelling sample of TCP by reacting hydroxybenzene (phenol) with chlorine gas

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The microscale synthesis of aspirin

Carry out a microscale esterification reaction between 2-hydroxybenzoic acid (salicylic acid) and ethanoic anhydride using phosphoric acid as a catalyst to produce aspirin on a microscale

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The microscale synthesis of azo dyes

Create fabric dye by synthesising an azo dye and using it to change the colour of a piece of cotton

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Molecular model misconceptions

Let us take a closer look at the suitability of using molecular models to teach the determination of chemical formulae. 

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Oxidation of ethanol

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Ethanol is oxidised by acidifed sodium dichromate in a test-tube reaction, firstly to form ethanal and, with further oxidation, ethanoic acid.