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Everything posted by Dicentra

  1. No worries, cin! 🙂 I figure, if nothing else, the un-updated posts can at least give folks a program/company name to go by and google even if the links are broken. 🙂 But I will try to do some updates when I can find a bit of time!
  2. I've been meaning to do a lot of updating on the pinned posts but I haven't yet managed it. Hopefully, soon. 🙂 Thanks for the updated info!
  3. I made multiple batches of this last year and froze it. It tasted SO good in the middle of winter on a -40C night - a little bit of summer in our kitchen. 🙂 The fresh basil makes an enormous difference - make sure you use lots of fresh basil and fresh garlic. 🙂
  4. This is us today: And in Fahrenheit for the States folks: 🙂 With humidity, it's 100F. This is Central Canada. This is HOT for early June but more common later in the summer. We also have to be prepared for these kinds of temps: Those are the minimum temps for this past February (dates on the left). The max temps for those days are the first column of temps. I have central heating and central A/C. Our houses are typically very well insulated which helps in both extremes. I'm almost in the center of the continent. Weather without large oceanic bodies nearby can have pretty wild swings!
  5. 😄 Goose poop makes excellent fertilizer. You're welcome. 😉 😄 (It is gross. And large, for a bird. And they are mean - trust me. You don't know from terror until you've been chased by a hissing, snapping, giant-wing-flapping Canada Goose. I still have flashbacks to that moment on a Grade 8 field trip to the Toronto Zoo. Shudder...)
  6. It's because I'm Canadian - we're just nice. We channel all of our rage into Canada Geese. It's why they're so dang mean. 😜
  7. That's an option that I'm offering for this year - partly based on feedback and partly because of the bizarre, COVID year(s) that's occurred. I've had a few parents concerned about Honors Chem grades and the difficult year and I thought this would be an option to help mitigate that. That's what was behind my reasoning for that.
  8. Yeah - I did think about that. Do you think going back and offering past families an updated grade report with a new course title ("Advanced Honors Chemistry") is something I should do? Would that help?
  9. I thought about that. I do feel like any change I make now will mean that folks that have taken the class in past will have "missed out" on something. But I don't want that to stop me from making changes going forward - know what I mean? I do think that there was too big of a gap between my reg Chem and the Honors Chem and wanted to fill that gap. It's the naming of the courses that's tripping me up. I could email my past parents with the changes and offer to reissue grade reports with the new name. Would it make that much difference, though? Would colleges really care if a course is named "Honors Chemistry" or "Advanced Honors Chemistry"? Being from Canada, I have a hard time thinking through how these things play out in the States. What do you guys think?
  10. Awesome! Thank you! It's always important to gather with people who share one's particular weirdness. And, in my case, teach and share that weirdness. 😄
  11. I think that the "Chemistry with Honors Chemistry option" would actually be good for most students - even ones who want to go into life or health sciences. I'd say that (and I do say this in the description on my website :)) the current Honors Chem (aka Advanced Honors Chemistry) is more meant for students who are aiming for chemistry/physics/chemical engineering majors in university. So some STEM majors should be ok with not taking the Adv Honors Chem. But food for thought!
  12. Yeah - I think organic chem and biochem require a special kind of weirdness to enjoy. I seem to have that weirdness in spades. 😉 😄
  13. It's more the parents/student that would decide if the student is feeling overwhelmed by the workload - if so, then they can contact me to make the transfer. "Too hard" might mean different things for different people so I like to leave it up to the parent/student to decide if it's too overwhelming. 🙂 I've loved having both your boys as students! 🙂
  14. I'm reviving my own thread. 🙂 I think I've decided what I would like to do regarding the split streaming. I think it makes more sense to keep my current Honors Chemistry course the way it is and rename it "Advanced Honors Chemistry". I'll then modify my current Chemistry course with extra questions on all the assignments/tests/exams (with a few additional topics) and rename that course "Chemistry with Honors Chemistry option". That course will function similar to Derek Owens' courses where students can decide for themselves during the first chapter or two if they would like to do the extra questions/topics or not. If they choose not to do them, they will receive a grade for "Chemistry". If they choose to do them (and they'll need to do all of the extra questions throughout the whole course for it to "count"), they will receive a grade for "Honors Chemistry". If they choose to do my current honors chem course (which will be renamed "Advanced Honors Chemistry"), that's a different course registration and they'd receive a grade for "Advanced Honors Chemistry". As always, students will have the option to transfer if they find the course they start in is too overwhelming/demanding. If a student starts in "Advanced Honors Chemistry" but is overwhelmed, they can transfer to "Chemistry with Honors Chemistry option" and choose to either do the Honors option or not. If a student starts in "Chemistry with Honors Chemistry option" but decides the Honors option is too much, they can simply stop doing the Honors questions. I've not finalized this decision yet (I'm waiting for a reply from the folks at PAH to see how they would like to handle this for my course through their program). What do people think? Does this sound workable? Is it too confusing?
  15. Dd just finished her 3rd year of uni - piano performance/composition double major. Her electives have been things like human bio, org chem, biochem, etc. She wrote the MCAT in March for the first time and got a 504 but wants to write it again to maximize her score. She's chosen to extend her undergrad degree to 5 years so she can do a couple of multi-year senior projects with two of her professors so she has lots of time to retake the MCAT. She'll probably begin applying to med schools in fall of her last year of undergrad.
  16. You're welcome. 🙂 I think there are a few courses/curricula listed at the very beginning of the Regular Chemistry post that are very basic - Chemistry Power Basics, Friendly Chemistry, Fascinating Chemistry. There is also the Conceptual Chemistry textbook by John Suchocki. As a chem teacher/instructor, there is a certain amount of content and a certain level of mathematical content that I would want to see in a chemistry course before I'd be comfortable labeling as high school chemistry (assuming we're talking about a neurotypical high school student and not a special needs student) but I know that there are varying thoughts on that amongst homeschoolers. 🙂 Hope that helps!
  17. I'd probably go with an environmental geology book of some kind. Aqueous chemistry as a stand-alone subject would be too broad and I think would get you bogged down in areas that won't be important. My Enviro Geo textbook from uni is VERY dated (I think I took the course in '93 or '94) but if you start with an up-to-date Enviro Geo textbook, it would give you a good background and you could use the resource list in the back of the book to find more specialized texts. That would be my thought. 🙂
  18. Are you looking to go further in chemistry? If you loved OChem, you can't do better than the Klein textbook: https://www.wiley.com/en-am/Klein's+Organic+Chemistry%2C+3rd+Edition%2C+Global+Edition-p-9781119451051 I'd also suggest getting these two books: https://www.wiley.com/en-us/Organic+Chemistry+as+a+Second+Language%3A+First+Semester+Topics%2C+5th+Edition-p-9781119493488 https://www.wiley.com/en-us/Organic+Chemistry+as+a+Second+Language%3A+Second+Semester+Topics%2C+5th+Edition-p-9781119493822 Klein is a MONSTER of a book (it's HUGE) but it will take you through a TON of OChem. 🙂
  19. Thank you for the links, lewelma!! There are some fantastic questions on those exams - I would love to be teaching a course that preps students for those!! I've been digging into botany lately. And the chemistry of art compounds. SO MUCH TO LEARN!!!! 😄 It is relevant - at least, I think it is. 🙂 As a learner, it's always important to understand why we're learning something and how we feel about learning it. So if I'm understanding you correctly, you want the most effective and efficient way to learn chemistry and physics that will give you enough of a background to teach those subjects to your daughter. You dislike learning by watching (even actively watching) lecture videos. You prefer to learn by working problems. You prefer to learn by reading. You prefer to learn through Socratic questioning by an expert. If I put all of that together, you're best bet is to take a good intro textbook for the subject, read each chapter and have someone assist in guiding you through the materials, and then work all the problems at the end of each chapter to reinforce the learning and to help you to internalize the material. The challenge questions at the end of the chapters in Chang "General Chemistry" are very good for helping the student to make connections. If you want the expert guide to go along with the textbook, you'll need to hire a chemistry tutor. You can do the same with a good intro physics textbook and a physics tutor. That, to me, would be the most effective and efficient way for you to go about it within the guidelines of how you like to learn. 🙂 What do you think of that idea?
  20. Ah - I understand. 🙂 Let me ask you this - how do you feel about chemistry as a discipline? How do you feel about it as a subject to learn? But they're all related - that's one of the most beautiful parts of science! 🙂 I love that we have a biologist, a chemist, a physicist, and some geologists and engineers all coming together to discuss science and science education. It makes my brain so very, very happy. 🙂 I. LOVE. THIS. QUESTION. 🙂 I did a quick think and a quick sketch and I think I have the identities for W, X, and Y. W must be an acid chloride: X would be an amide: And Y would be the carboxylic acid: Organic chemistry is such a beautiful, beautiful subject. It's just all intricate little puzzles to solve. 🙂 (I hope I'm right on the identities of the molecules. I'll need to eat my hat if I'm not. ;))
  21. I'm more curious what your definition is - or what you thought mine is. 🙂 I'm only a chemist, not a mathematician. Your definition (or thoughts on a definition) will probably be far more illuminating than mine would be. 🙂
  22. I definitely use some Socratic questioning when teaching. 🙂 When I was going through my ed courses to become a teacher, there was a lot of interest and talk about using the discovery method and Socratic questioning to teach chemistry as opposed to the "sage on the stage" method of traditional lectures. I think an experienced teacher will use a multitude of methods depending on the topic, time constraints, and the students they have in front of them. Curious - what's your definition of a "math question"? Just wondering how your definition differs from what you think mine is. 🙂
  23. I did say "may need to take another course". 🙂 It's certainly possible that a student will "get" all the connections the first time around. The best way to have the greatest possibility of that happening in chemistry is have an expert guide along with well written materials (and for the student to be well into the formal operational stage of reasoning - that's VITAL for understanding the abstract nature of chemistry). If the written materials (whether that be a traditional textbook or something else) contained explanations of all the connections to be made between concepts, then I suppose you wouldn't need the expert guide. I've not yet come across any one resource, though, that I felt had that. If there was, I suppose it would put me out of a job. 😉 To the bold - not in chemistry (in my opinion :)). I think you might be looking for something that doesn't exist. 🙂 You can't learn chemistry by solely doing problems - there's too much non-math content that needs to be learned before you can begin the mathematical aspects of chemistry. If by "problems", you're including non-math questions, then I think you're talking about learning a subject through Socratic questioning. You absolutely need an expert guide to learn by that method. I think that's probably the method your grandmother used to teach you math, yes? And the method you're using with your daughter? It's possible to teach chemistry exclusively through Socratic questioning but because it's not time-effective or feasible for use with a whole classroom of students (who are all at different levels and stages), I don't know of a curriculum or resource that's been developed for purchase that would do that. You would need to hire a tutor (à la the kind of tutor that wealthy families would have hired for their sons to be taught at home - an expert in the subject who would be dedicated to teaching you one-on-one). 🙂
  24. When my math-y friend shared that with me, I had to share the following back with him. 😉 😄 And the other version with a little more text on the right hand side...
  25. I LOVE geology. The few spots I had for electives while studying chemistry were filled with geology courses. 🙂 You're going to have such fun!!!
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