The day started out like any other, wake up early, take some time to myself, have a tea, read my book, eat some toast. And, then came time for me to teach my chemistry lesson, first thing in the morning. I was in the lab beginning to set things up and I was tripping all over the place, knocking things over and such. Then I hip-checked a gas valve sticking out of one of the lab tables. Even still, I was replacing some stoppers on the delivery tubes, which are glass, and cut my finger…all of this before the lesson even started.
We started the lesson by reviewing the fire triangle and the elements need for a fire to even take place (oxygen, fuel, and heat) and by taking one of those away is how to put out the fire. We then discussed some of the fire extinguishers they had researched for homework. I then demonstrated how a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher works and that from the reaction, the carbon dioxide will displace water from a tube. The groups then carried out their practical, which was testing how the reaction changed when different amounts of the reactants were added. In the mean time, we had a test tube break, a conical flask break, and a girl spill a huge tub of water down her front.
Even with all the mishaps, and some really wonky results, it went well. I met with Miss Hughes, who's class I taught to discuss things she observed. There were some good things that she pointed out, for instance in the UK when you see 0.2 they say "not point two", where as in the states I would say, and did say, "two-tenths". She also said to make sure that all the students are recording results, and that I could ask questions as I'm walking around to check for understanding, and to make sure I have their full attention before trying to sum up the lesson. She said that she liked how I started the lesson, and that referring to their homework helped make a connection between the last lesson and the one I was teaching. I was very pleased and exceeded the expectations I had for myself. I also know that I have much to learn in the way of teaching science. More to come.