AP Chemistry Course Information

About the Course

AP Chemistry is a challenging and rewarding course which offers many advantages. First, you will receive the most rigorous education in chemistry offered at the high school level. It will prepare you to succeed in college-level courses of science and mathematics. Second, you will learn significant skills and knowledge in a central scientific field. Finally, by taking and passing the AP Chemistry exam you have an opportunity to show colleges your dedication to academics and to show a high level of achievement. In addition, depending on the college where you enroll, you may earn credits or have an opportunity to immediately enter higher-level courses as a result of passing the AP Chemistry exam. The exam costs about $97 but, if your college awards credits for your work, you may save several hundreds of dollars.

How to Succeed

In this course I will rely heavily on you to be active listeners and participants in lectures. I expect students to read the text and come to class prepared to ask questions as I present the material. I will ask questions and invite your participation to keep things interesting. A large fraction of class time will also be dedicated to working in the lab. Most of the learning you will do, however, will rely on the work you do outside of class. Be prepared to spend several hours studying for every hour of lecture. You should outline the chapter as you read it, work the examples in the text, do the assigned problem sets, and focus on the designated memory work. In addition to your preparation for quizzes and tests you must remember that lab reports can take several hours to write. For more information about the work you will do in this course please read the syllabus carefully. Read the document I prepared about How to Study Chemistry and the explanation I have written about the FIO class motto. The Advice of Former Students to New Students is also very helpful and will be a useful resource throughout the year. The web page version of this page has active links for all of these documents and for all of the documents listed below.

I encourage you to form study groups over the summer to complete your work. It often helps you to understand things better if you have to try to explain it to a peer. I will leave the organization of study groups up to you but I will be glad to help you get organized if you ask.

Summer Work

In order to succeed in AP Chemistry it is recommended by the College Board to take a year of high school chemistry before enrolling. Since that is generally not what students at this school do we must make up for the lack of a previous course. You will need familiarity with mathematical ideas essential for chemistry and you will need to have experience handling chemical concepts, and the math used to address them. This packet contains some of the work you will need to do to prepare for this fall. The rest is on my web site: http://kaffee.50webs.com/Science/APChem-Summer.Work.2023.htm. The homepage for my courses can be found at http://kaffee.50webs.com/Science/.

Read the course description documents and familiarize yourself with the way the course will be run. It will be fast-paced and challenging and you will need to be able to start the year strongly. Students are responsible for completing the summer work before the start of school in the Fall and must expect to be tested on this material during the first week of classes. Note that some materials provide additional practice and it may not be necessary for you to do every single exercise in order to master the ideas and skills. Only do what you need to do to be sure you understand. None of this will be collected. Instead, a quiz will be given after we discuss the material in class.

Important: Do not wait until the end of August to begin your summer work! In order to learn the material well you need to spend some time with it: it can't be done well if it's done at the last minute.

What to Do
  1. Read the course documents.
  2. Prepare your materials: notebook, binder, calculator, periodic table, and ions reference (see links below; these are also included in your packet).
  3. Use the Summer Work page to keep track of your progress. Cross out assignments as you complete them or as you determine you will not need to do them. Remember, mastery is your goal, not completion.
  4. Work on assignments in the order given below. Some items have been printed out to be included in your packet. Others are only available online.

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Important Course Documents

Find these on my web site: http://kaffee.50webs.com/Science/APChem-Summer.Work.2023.htm. Read them this summer and refer to them throughout the school year.

AP Chemistry Syllabus
Lab Safety Rules
Lab Report Writing Information
Lab Notebook Information
How to Study for AP Chemistry
Advice of Former Students to New Students

AP Chemistry at the College Board Web Site

Read the Course Overview and Course Description


Periodic Table (PDF) from http://www.webelements.com/
Periodic Table Image suitable for printing
Periodic Table colored by groups from http://www.chemicool.com/
A Reference Sheet of Common Ions
Alternate Ions Reference Handout
Examples of Chemistry Problems
Videos that May Help
Chemistry: Challenges and Solutions from The Annennberg Foundation
Crash Course Chemistry (all videos)

Summer Work Assignments

Do as many practice exercises in each activity as you need in order to improve your understanding of the material. You do not need to print everything out and fill it out completely. I will not be checking your work directly. Instead I will give you a quiz covering these topics when you first come to class in the fall. You will not be able to do all of this work in one week!

Significant Digits and Measurement
Significant Zeros
Group Activity: Scientific Notation (html)
Additional Examples for Scientific Notation (html)
Homework: Scientific Notation
Group Activity: Dimensional Analysis (html)
Homework 1: Dimensional Analysis
Homework 2: Dimensional Analysis
Activity: Metrics
Homework: Metrics
Activity: Square and Cubic Units
Notes: Classification of Matter
Classification of Matter handwritten notes
Pure Substances and Mixtures at the Particle Level in Pictures
Homework: Classification of Matter: Elements, Compounds and Mixtures
Homework: Classification of Matter: Phases of Matter
Homework: Phases of Matter using PhET Simulator

Group Activity: Density (html)

Atomic Structure and the Periodic Table
Lost your periodic table? Get one from: http://www.webelements.com/
Periodic Table colored by groups (color your
periodic table to match)
Atomic Structure Homework

Group Activity: Average Atomic Mass

Group Activity: Light
Spectrum Reference Sheet
Homework: Light
Additional Problems: Light

Activity: Electron Configuration
Homework: Electron Configuration
Homework: Waves vs. Particles

Activity: Chemical Nomenclature
Sugar and Salt Solutions with PhET Simulator
(Sugar and Salt Simulator)
homework #1
homework #2
Flowchart for Naming Inorganic Binary Compounds

How to Draw Lewis Diagrams
Molecules to Draw Lewis Diagrams for
Homework: Drawing Lewis Diagrams
Review of Molecular Compounds including Lewis Diagrams and 3-D Shapes

The Mole
Homework Assignment: The Mole and Molar Mass

Balancing Chemical Equations
Homework for Balancing Chemical Equations

Activity: Stoichiometry
Homework: Stoichiometry
Activity: Stoichiometry with Limiting Reagent and Percent Yield
Homework: Stoichiometry with Limiting Reagent and Percent Yield
Last updated: Jun 15, 2023        Home