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Combustion Lesson Plan

Instructor: Joanne Abramson

Joanne has taught middle school and high school science for more than ten years and has a master's degree in education.

Explosions help make chemistry exciting. This lesson plan uses a video lesson, hands-on activity, and a video demonstration to illustrate the reactants and products of a combustion reaction.

Lesson Objectives

By the end of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Define the term 'combustion reaction'
  • Describe what occurs during a combustion reaction
  • Name the reactants and products of a combustion reaction

Length

1-1.5 hours

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.3

Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.4

Determine the meaning of symbols, key terms, and other domain-specific words and phrases as they are used in a specific scientific or technical context relevant to grades 9-10 texts and topics.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.9

Compare and contrast findings presented in a text to those from other sources (including their own experiments), noting when the findings support or contradict previous explanations or accounts.

Materials

  • Online video showing the 'whoosh bottle' demonstration
  • 250 mL beakers
  • Candles (must be shorter in height than the beakers)
  • Matches or lighters
  • Foil pieces (large enough to cover the mouth of a 250 ml beaker)
  • Limewater (make 24 hours ahead of time)
    • 600 mL beakers
    • Calcium hydroxide (can be purchased online or at aquatic stores)
    • Distilled water
    • Stirring rod or spoon
    • Funnel
    • Coffee filter
  • Erlenmeyer flask
  • Straw

Instructions

Preparation

  • At least one day ahead of time, create a limewater solution. (Depending on the size of your class, you may need to prepare multiple beakers.)
    • Put 1/4 tsp of calcium hydroxide in a 600 mL beaker and fill it with distilled water. (Limewater is a saturated solution, so some of the calcium hydroxide will not dissolve.)
    • Stir for 1-2 minutes and then let the solution stand for 24 hours.
    • Line a funnel with a coffee filter and pour the solution through to filter it.
    • You may need to filter it more than once to get a clear solution.
    • Pour the solution into several beakers so that students can access it for their activity.

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