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An Integrated Database of Common Chemicals and Chemistry Demonstrations and Student Experiments Used in Hungary

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journal contribution
posted on 2021-11-01, 12:38 authored by Lajos Kovács, Gábor Betyár, Erzsébet Korom
Chemistry curricula in part rely on the use of laboratory demonstrations and experiments. The complex nature of this kind of educational activity has been posing challenges from the very early days of teaching chemistry. As chemistry is an experimental science, one possible approach to make the teaching of this subject more efficient is to use materials that students encounter in their everyday life. The present paper delineates our efforts to create an integrated database of common chemicals and their use in Hungarian elementary and middle schools. The database combines two seemingly separate but intimately connected fields which has not been accomplished so far: a database of common chemicals and a database of chemistry laboratory demonstration experiments. The two databases with their own idiosyncrasies are connected through a common element, the components present in everyday chemicals. The database offers various levels of searching in both subdatabases and allows pre- and in-service teachers to design their own demonstrations and student experiments, based on common chemicals, that best fit their curricula in context-, project-, inquiry-, discovery-, and phenomenon-based education. The application of our database allows the facilitation of a conceptual change how chemistry and chemicals are contemplated both in and outside school.