The purpose of this unit is for students to experience the interdisciplinary nature of chemistry and science by having them create a work of art using processes and/or concepts learned in class. Each student will create their own art piece which incorporates at least 7 chemical processes. At least 4 of them must be concepts learned in class. The theme of the project: My Personal Identity. Accompanying the physical project will be a “How-To” paper which explains at least 7 of the chemical processes used to create the art piece. Also, accompanying the project will be a paper explaining the theme – how the project relates to themselves.
This unit should be introduced at the beginning of the year, although it is meant to be completed sometime during the last nine weeks of the academic year. At this time share the rubric and project specifications with the students. Periodically throughout the year, check in with students on project ideas, or how a particular topic of study might relate to the project.
This unit will be very laboratory intensive, and could include 5-8 laboratory activities. It will also cover a variety of chemistry topics, including: acids and bases, solvents, solutions and solubility, reaction types, chemical bonding, and polarity.
This unit was adapted from the “Artist as Chemist.” Active Chemistry. New York: It’s About Time, 2003.
Brawner, Bonnie, "Artist as Chemist [10th grade]" (2015). Understanding by Design: Complete Collection. Paper 317.
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Introductory Powerpoint for Lesson 1
Lesson 01.02 - Art slide show.ppt.pptx (13434 kB)
Art Slide Show (embedded into Intro ppt.)
Lesson01.03-ArtistasChemist-ProjectRubric.docx (63 kB)
Rubric and Specifications for Final Project
Lesson02.02.LabProcedures-AcidRainLab.docx (7 kB)
Lab Procedures for Acid Rain Lab
Lesson04.LabProcedures-ActivityofMetalsPartA.docx (7 kB)
Lab Procedures for Activity of Metals Lab, Part A