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BCCE W40:. Developing Demonstrations for the Classroom and the JCE Tested Demonstrations Feature. Bill Deese Todd Silverstein Ed Vitz. Ed Vitz. http://faculty.kutztown.edu/vitz/. Tested Demos Home Page: http://faculty.kutztown.edu/vitz/TD/TDhome.html. JCE Information for Authors.

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bcce w40

Developing Demonstrations for the Classroom and the JCE Tested Demonstrations Feature

Bill DeeseTodd SilversteinEd Vitz

ed vitz
Ed Vitz


Tested Demos Home Page:


JCE Information for Authors

Door Prizes

Magic Sand/JCE 2000-2002 issues/goldenrod

JCE Software Door prize

Recent issues of JCE, JCE pencils, etc.

Volunteers for TD checkers??

bill deese

Carson Taylor Hall 335,

Department of Chemistry,

Louisiana Tech University,

Ruston, LA 71272

Phone: (318) 257-4878

Fax: (318) 257-3823wcdeese@vm.cc.latech.edu

http://www.chem.LaTech.edu/(University Front Page!!??)


Bill Deese

Ph. D., University of Arkansas, 1981.

B. S., University of Central University , 1976.

Areas of Interest

Synthesis and characterization of bimetallic complexes containing platinum(II).

Chemical Education; Serious Juggling; Chemistry on TV

selected bill deese publications
Selected Bill Deese Publications
  • Science Education Publications
    • "Demonstrating Molecular Shapes", W. C. Deese, Journal of College Science Teaching,    XVI, (Nov., 1986).
    •  "A Miniature Hot Air Balloon and Charles' Law", W. C. Deese, Journal of Chemical     Education,  67, 672 (1990).
    • "Using Science Demonstrations to Assess Conceptual Understanding and Critical Thinking",     Radford, Ramsey, and Deese, The Science Teacher,  62, No. 7, 52-55, (Oct., 1995).
    • "Demonstrating the Bowling Ball in the Boat Puzzle", W.C. Deese, R. Hamburg, The Physics   Teacher, 34, No. 3, 197 (Mar.,1996).
    • "Diffusion of Gases Through Punctured Balloons", W. C. Deese, A. M. Washburn, Journal of   Chemical Education, 73, 540 (1996).
  • "The Ring of Fire Demonstration", W. C. Deese, CHEM 13 NEWS, 8, (Nov., 1996).
todd silverstein
Todd Silverstein

BA., Brandeis University; M.S., Ph.D., UC Berkeley.


Phone: 503-375-5359 email: tsilvers@willamette.edu

Courses Taught:

Chem. 115 Introductory Chemistry I

Chem. 116 Introductory Chemistry II

Chem. 351 Biochemistry

Chem. 430 Advanced Topics in Biochemistry

Professional Interests: Biological membranes and bioenergetics; excitable membranes and energy transduction; neurochemistry; sensory transduction, and hormone signalling.

Interests: I am a folk musician (tinwhistle, bouzouki, guitar, mandolin, sax), dance caller (contras and squares), singer and dancer; I bicycle as well.

selected todd silverstein publications
Selected Todd Silverstein Publications

Silverstein, Todd P. Equilibrium: A Teaching/Learning Activity J. Chem. Educ. 2000 77 1410

Silverstein, Todd P. Graphing Calculator Strategies for Solving Chemical Equilibrium Problems (re J. Chem. Educ. 1999, 76, 632-634) J. Chem. Educ. 2000 77 1120

Silverstein, Todd P. Weak vs Strong Acids and Bases: The Football Analogy J. Chem. Educ. 2000 77 849

Silverstein, Todd P. Principles of Physical Biochemistry (by Kersal E. van Holde, W. Curtis Johnson, P. Shing Ho) J. Chem. Educ. 1999 76 474

Silverstein, Todd P. The "Big Dog-Puppy Dog" Analogy for Resonance J. Chem. Educ. 1999 76 206

journal standards
Journal Standards

The ACS Style guide: A Manual for Authors and Editors, 2nd Ed., ed. Janet S. Dodd, American Chemical Society, 1997.

ISBN 0-8412-3462-0 pbk

Available from:

ACS: http://pubs.acs.org/books/index.html;


Chapter 10: Peer Review

Appendix III: Ethical Guidelines to Publication of Chemical Research

criteria for acceptance of manuscripts
Criteria for Acceptance of Manuscripts

ACS Style Guide p. 305:

1. Is It New

2. Is It True

Allen J. Bard

The University of Texas at Austin

Immediate Past Editor, Journal of the American Chemical Society

And we’ll add

3. Is it Safe to Do?

is it safe to do
Is It Safe To Do?

No danger to audience or demonstrator (consult and quote the MSDS*)

Prescribe safe disposal. Consult Flinn catalog or MSDS.

Demonstrators should follow DIVCHED “Minimum Safety Guidelines for Chemical Demonstrations” and other safety references.

Demonstrations can be an excellent mechanism for improving safety by teaching safe procedures, by making dangerous properties known and by showing how to avoid the danger.

We will not ban phenolphthalein or Yamada’s Universal indicator (which contains phenolphthalein) because of its recent addition to EPA carcinogen list, but we will note that status and publish safe handling and disposal procedures.

is it new
Is It New?

Search the JCE Index for Primogenitors

Search as many published demonstration books as possible http://faculty.kutztown.edu/vitz/TD/TDhome.html


but not


Novel presentations of well-known phenomena are great, but new demonstrations must be significantly different from previous ones if they exist.

is it true
Is It True?

• Tested Demonstrations must work as published with very little “tweaking”.

• Checkers actually do them.

• The chemistry is in the explanation and the chemistry must be correct (but keep it brief): Nick Downes

chemistry defined
“Chemistry” Defined

PV = nRT

TiCl4, (CH3CH2)3Al


With apologies to

Nick Downes, “Big Science,” AAAS Press, 1992, p10.

ferrioxalate actinometer
Ferrioxalate Actinometer

The Ferrioxalate Actinometer, JCE 58, 655 (1981)


If we did not know the formulas…the chemistry...for the photochemical reaction, we wouldn’t know that it contained a component of spinach or rhubarb which is toxic. A fatal dose of oxalate is 1500 mg, and spinach has 600 mg/100 g, peanuts 150 mg/100 g, rhubarb 500 mg/100g (much higher in leaves), and a cup of tea 50 mg.*

Oxalic acid in rhubarb can be used to clean aluminum pans because it bonds to Al even better than it bonds to Fe…. For best flavor, rhubarb should not be cooked in aluminum pans…

Oxalic acid is used in radiator shops and in heavy duty cooling system cleaners…Why?

Spinach, which has a high iron and calcium content, is a lousy source of dietary iron and calcium… Why?

*Emsley, J. “Molecules at an Exhibition,” Oxford U. Press, 1998


Oxalic acid toxicity is due to lowering the blood Ca2+ level, because it bonds to Ca2+ more strongly than to Al or Fe!

But not all the calcium oxalate is excreted…some may remain in the body and accumulate in the bladder and kidneys as “kidney stones.”

Surplus Vitamin C is metabolized to oxalic acid in the body and huge does may lead to … kidney stones.

Antifreeze (ethylene glycol) is metabolized to oxalic acid, and that’s what accounts for it’s notorious toxicity to animals, which drink it because it tastes sweet.

Carl Wilhelm Scheele detected oxalic acid in rhubarb in 1784.


Robert Hammond

Janet Marie Gidley

Martin Bartholow

Douglas Mulford

John Olson

Sami Ibrahim


Randy Ramsden

Phil Reedy

Joseph Schmuckler

Edward Senkbeil

some demos
Some Demos

Bill Deese demonstrating the effects of molecular motion and convection

demos cont d
Demos, cont’d.

John Olson demonstrating the effects of magnetic ink used in US currency.

demos cont d20
Demos, cont’d.

Joe Schmuckler describing his group’s research on the pedagogical efficacy of demonstrations.

demos cont d21
Demos, cont’d.

Martin Bartholow describing his water manometer and its use to teach gas laws.

demos cont d22
Demos, cont’d.

Phil Reedy (right) with volunteers about to demonstrate the simultaneous explosion of multiple Pringles cans effect

demos cont d23
Demos, cont’d.

Sami Ibrahim demonstrating chromatography and detection of Fe, Ni, Co ions

demos cont d24
Demos, cont’d.

Todd Silverstein demonstrating the effects of polarity of liquids on their behavior