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Modifying and creating activities
Many of the virtual lab activities on our website were created for use in specific classrooms. If you have an idea for an activity that you would like to use with your students, please and we will create it for you. In addition, if you would like to modify any of our current activities for your classroom, we would be happy to to this for you. If you plan on creating many problems, you may want to check out our authoring tool below.
The activity creation tools on this site enable you to, for example, easily alter the chemicals in a Virtual Lab experiment or activity or to combine an activity with real-world scenarios to put introductory chemistry concepts in engaging contexts. An example is our Mission Critical Chemistry activity, which uses a rocket simulation and brief video clips with an interesting thermochemistry problem.
Capabilities of the Virtual Lab Authoring Tool
The Virtual Lab Authoring Tool allows you to modify an existing activity or create an entirely new one. This tool allows you to:
At any time, you can preview how the assignment will appear to your students.
Options for getting started
You can view a tutorial that discusses steps you may want to take before using the Virtual Lab Authoring Tool, e.g. write up the text of the problem, make a list of the chemicals, and identify a textbook or reference book with the needed parameters (molecular weight, density, standard enthalpy of formation, standard entropy, and standard state) for each chemical species in your problem. When all this is done, open the Virtual Lab Authoring Tool and start creating.
You might want to start by viewing the codes for several sample activities currently included in the collection:
Options for exploring new types of activities
You can design Virtual Lab activities that use any chemicals for which you can provide the following parameters:
These can be found in textbooks or chemistry handbooks for most chemical species, so there are few constraints on the atoms, ions, or compounds you can use. In addition, you can invent new compounds or borrow commercial products for your activities. Coffee and Jello are used in two of the currently available activities; new oxidants and reductants have been created (virtually) for developing improved fuels for a Mission to Mars activity.
Contribute an activity
If you are happy with the results you get in using your learning activity with students, we encourage you to so that we can share your activity and experience with other educators in the ChemCollective community.
|Page Last Updated: 02.23.2010|