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Cooking Up Science with Miss America: "Let's Concentrate!"

Miss America Camille Schrier making rock candy

Home Learning | Cooking Up Science with Miss America

Episode 5: If you brew tea or coffee for too long, it gets really strong, bitter and dark. But if you add water, you can lessen its strength. So, when we talk about how strong our coffee is, we are really talking about CONCENTRATION. Like stirring a teaspoon of sugar into a cup of tea, solids can have a concentration in a liquid, but first they need to be able to dissolve into a solution (solubility). But, is there a limit to how much of a solid the solution can take in? Through some sweet treats you can eat, let's explore the scientific concepts of concentration, solubility and super saturated solutions. I promise you it's going to ROCK! Developed for students in grades 6-10.

Produced by Camille Schrier, Miss America 2020, in partnership with VPM.

NOTE: The rock candy activity requires adult supervision.

Key Terms:

  • Concentration
  • Solute
  • Solvent
  • Solution
  • Super saturated solutions

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Virginia Standards of Learning (2018):

3.3  The student will investigate and understand how materials interact with water. Key ideas include:
a) Solids and liquids mix with water in different ways;
b) Many solids dissolve more easily in hot water than in cold water.

5.7  The student will investigate and understand that matter has properties and interactions. Key ideas include:
a)  Matter is composed of atoms;
b)  Substances can be mixed together without changes in their physical properties; and
c)  Energy has an effect on the phases of matter.

CH.5 The student will investigate and understand that solutions behave in predictable and quantifiable ways. Key ideas include:
a)  Molar relationships determine solution concentration;
b)  Changes in temperature can affect solubility;
c)  Extent of dissociation defines types of electrolytes;
d) pH and pOH quantify acid and base dissociation; and
e)  Colligative properties depend on the extent of dissociation.

Also includes the .1 standards (SEPs) Science and Engineering Practices