Why Go Nano?

Eulalia Sui (ASU Graduate Student) & Mr. Brian Fireng (Chandler School District)
Grade Level: 
8th-12th Grade
National Science Education Standards: 
Science as Inquiry Properties and Changes of Properties in Matter Structure and Properties of Matter
Arizona State Science Education Standards: 
Strand 1: Inquiry Process Concept 1 – Observations, questions, and hypotheses Concept 2 – Scientific Testing Concept 3 – Analysis and Conclusion Concept 4 – Communication Strand 5: Physical Science Concept 1 – Properties and Changes of Properties in Matter Arizona High School Standards: Strand 5: Physical Science Concept 1 – Structure and Properties of Matter
Using beads as models for air “filtering” materials, students make observations and construct their own investigation on the effects of altering the amount of available surface areas. The lesson provides an introduction to students on nanotechnology, its benefit in greatly increasing available surface areas, and challenges associated with its application. The lesson also investigates the big idea of form and function.

In the collection of chemical species, particularly those of toxic natures, high sensitivity is key to abstracting all harmful materials. To achieve high sensitivity, scientists are making smaller materials, such as nanoparticles, which yield higher surface areas. The application of these materials, however, poses many challenges.

In the following lesson, students will investigate the pros and cons of going smaller in size.

The proposed lesson plan addresses the inquiry process strands and is intended for 8th grade or higher level courses.

Nanotechnology, Physical Properties, Surface Area, Separation, Filters
Lesson Plan.doc64.5 KB
Lesson Supplmental Handout.doc161 KB