Saturday, November 24, 2012

Sometimes the Students are the Teachers

There is not much to say about this other than to celebrate a life lived and a chemistry department willing to work with a student and a family to allow this to happen. [LINK]. Godspeed.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Chem Way to Die

Our discipline selects for over-achieving, pessimistic introverts so our natural inclination is to appreciate gallows humour. That is probably why I get such a kick out of this PSA from England that is making a hit on the internet.

I decided that I would offer an Extra Credit challenge for my students in lab courses to re-write this catchy little tune for chemistry in a "Chem way to Die". For full marks they have to upload a youtube video of them singing your stanza and the refrain. So for example:

"Light a candle in solvent stores.
Use a bunsen burner to make smores.
Over-nitrate toluene.
Use an open flask to make a phosphine.

Chem way to die
So many chem ways to die
Chem way to die-ie-ie
So many chem ways to die"

I understand that there will always be killjoy haters that will point out that one should not make fun of safety rules and that people have actually been hurt in these kinds of accidents. Well. haters have to hate ... I choose to laugh.

About Me

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For a while it was all about research and then it was all about teaching and now it's all about trying to find a balance while teaching at a small liberal arts and science university.