AP Chemistry Syllabus 2019 - 2020

Website including online calendar: http://kaffee.50webs.com/Science
E-mail: akeller [at] scarboroughschools . org

Course Overview Documents

Course Learning Targets

FIO Class Motto
Late Work
How to Study for AP Chemistry
Advice of Former Students to New Students
Exam Wrapper
Lab Safety Rules
Lab Notebook Information
Lab Report Writing Information (html)
Real Life Chemistry Assignments
Doing Science
Extension Labs: Beyond Basic Chemistry
AP Chemistry Summer Work 2019
Personal Introduction Essay (doc)
Expectations regarding Problem Sets and Free Response Question packets


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The College Board AP Chemistry Course Description states that the “course is designed to be the equivalent of the general chemistry course usually taken during the first college year.” The text goes on to say that, “Students in such a course should attain a depth of understanding of fundamentals and a reasonable competence in dealing with chemical problems. The course should contribute to the development of the students’ abilities to think clearly and to express their ideas, orally and in writing, with clarity and logic.” Therefore I have adopted the following goals for this course:

Instructional Techniques and Assessment

Grades in the course will be broken down as follows:
        Tests: 40% (1 per quarter)
    Quizzes: 35% (4 - 6 per quarter)
          Labs: 25% (6 - 7 2-hr labs per quarter)

The schedule at the end of this introductory material shows what to expect for each unit. Specific dates are not given in the interest of maintaining flexibility. The number of hours of class time for each unit is indicated as a goal. Also in the schedule is recommended Memory Work which are items that you should commit to memory.

For each unit you will be required to complete a brief Outline of the important points in the reading assigned for that unit. This will be submitted through Google Classroom. This Outline must be separated into the sections used in the chapter. Sometimes one or two entries on the Outline will be sufficient for a given section. For other, more complicated sections you will need to use your judgment as to what the most important ideas and problem-solving techniques are. Keep Outlines brief! I require this work to encourage you to prepare thoroughly for class. It’s up to you to make it useful to you. You may never look at it again but the fact that you made it can help you to learn and to read carefully. Outlines should be completed by the first day of a new unit: you must read ahead!

A tip about reading textbooks: they are not novels. In a novel you typically read a passage once with full comprehension. The action carries you forward through the text. Textbooks build sequentially in each chapter and you will at times need to read a section several times—and work through its examples on paper— before you can move on to the next section. Be self-aware and check in with yourself: Did I understand that passage? Could I solve problems based on it?

Each unit has a Problem Set that consists of questions and problems from the ends of the chapters. At times I will assign problems from supplementary material for the Problem Set. These problem sets can be approached in several ways:

  1. You will work independently to solve the problems using only your brain, the text, a calculator and paper and pencil.
  2. You will work in study groups outside of class to help one another to solve the problems. Use this time not to copy another student’s solution but to compare notes about the best way to get to a solution.
  3. You will come to your teacher during Advisory to work on problems so that you can check solutions and ask questions.

Outlines will be checked for completeness and count for 1/10 of a quiz grade. Problem sets will be checked using a homework quiz. Prior to the quiz you will be required to be able to present to the class a solution to a random problem.

The date of the Homework Quiz will be set whenever we begin a new unit. The Homework Quiz will draw on problems directly from your homework and will be short.

Test dates will be near the end of each quarter. Tests will be designed to simulate the AP Chemistry Exam as closely as possible. Tests will be comprehensive and will be designed to be completed in one hour. Timed tests will help you to prepare for the AP Exam.

Labs will be offered six to seven times each quarter. Lab assignments will vary in scope but at minimum will require completion of pre-lab work by the first day of work and completion of post-lab questions. Three to four times each quarter you will be required to submit a full formal lab report (format available separately). A portion of your lab grade will depend on your diligence in keeping a good scientific lab notebook. Required for this purpose is a permanently bound ruled notebook. In this notebook you will write your lab procedures, lab notes and data while you work in the lab. By the end of the course you will have accumulated the documentation necessary for colleges to determine whether to give you credit for the lab portion of the AP Chemistry class. A handout is available separately that describes how to make good use of your lab notebook.

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In this course our motto is FIO (an acronym that I leave to the reader: you will figure it out if you think about it for a bit).

It is important that you evaluate yourself frequently as you work to find out what you have learned. Try repeating to yourself the contents of class discussions. Even better, go over the concepts and problem-solving techniques with your study group: communicating something you have learned forces you to organize your thoughts about it. When you do so, you learn it better yourself. This is true also about writing in the course. Your lab reports and the answers to lab questions are learning opportunities. When you explain what you have learned in writing you often find that you have not learned it as well as you thought you did. Go back and learn it properly and your writing will improve.

We will spend time in this course developing your mental math skills. The multiple-choice portion of the AP Chemistry Exam must be done without calculators.

Advisory and Office Hours

One of the most important ways to improve your grade in my class is to do well on tests and quizzes. In order to encourage you to come in for help with your preparation I will offer 5% in extra credit points on a quiz if you come in at least once to study in my room during advisory or office hours and actively ask me questions. To earn the extra points your visit must be at least one school day prior to the quiz. This is a great opportunity to get together with friends to come in and ask questions and study together.


Primary textbook: Chemistry: The Central Science, 13th edition, Brown, LeMay, Bursten, Murphy, Woodward, & Stoltzfus. Pearson Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, 2015.
Laboratory Experiments for Advanced Placement Chemistry, 2nd edition, Sally Ann Vonderbrink, Ph.D., Flinn Scientific, Inc., Batavia, IL, 2006.
POGIL Activities for High School Chemistry, Laura Trout, editor. Flinn Scientific, Inc. ©2012
Supplementary Materials available on instructor’s web site (http://kaffee.50webs.com/Science/).

Quotes from Students

“I think this class has made me more of a self-driven learner. Before this year if I was stuck on a problem I would often wait for the teacher to explain it, but now I take the time and do the work to figure it out on my own. I think this has really improved my learning.”

“This class has changed me as a student because I have had to learn how to do more learning on my own and be efficient in my work so I have time to study.”

“I’ve had to manage my time a lot more and focus on what I have the most trouble on, rather than everything. I am a more effective worker and problem solver because of it.”

“This class has made me a much more independent student. To be successful in this class, you must be driven and do hours of studying outside of class.”

“This class has changed me in a lot of different ways, honestly. I have learned to study better, which in turn helped me keep my grades up not only in Chem but in every class. I have also learned to time manage. It was really fun and I'm glad I took it and I highly recommend it!”

“This class has changed me as a student because it's shown me that I'm not as smart as I thought I was. It has showed me that if I want to be smart, I'm going to have to try a lot harder.”

“This class has made me realize that some subjects are most effectively learned—or even must be learned—simply by applying new concepts through trial and error (e.g., in the problem sets). I have become a more patient learner because of this class, more willing to blunder around in the dark until things make sense, and more appreciative of the time it takes to develop true understanding.”

“Success in fields like Chemistry has less to do with how many facts you can just rote memorize and more with a willingness to study, think about, and eventually understand fundamental systems.”

“This class has changed me as a student because I had to look at things before tests to not fail them.”

“This class has changed me as a student because it has strengthened my ability to solve problems. I have developed new strategies involving looking at problems from different angles and writing down everything I know first. This has carried through to my other classes”

“The way I study for classes is different. Overall, I think I am able to more effectively study and succeed in other classes. By taking this class, I better understand what techniques work best for me. I value practicing the problems more after the course. An example would be practice tests for other courses. I made sure to use practice tests before my other exams.”

“My studying has become much more efficient and effective. In previous years I would save studying for the night before but now I make an effort to study a little bit as I go along. Also, in previous years I would rarely, if ever, do extra assignments or supplemental material if I wouldn’t get a grade for them. Now, I frequently do these things because I want to expand my knowledge of a topic which I know will probably help me later on.”

“This course has pushed me to the breaking point. There have been times where I wanted to drop down a level. But through these moments, I learned perseverance. I also learned how to think analytically and really learned to appreciate this class separate from the grades.”

“This class has single-handedly taught me that if I put my mind to something, I'll be able to do it.”

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First Quarter
and Time
Text Information
incl. Problems
Lab(s) Memory Work
Matter and Measurement
Dimensional Analysis, Scientific Notation, Significant Figures, Density, Temperature
1 hour

Atomic Structure :
Basics of Atomic Theory
2 hours
Chapter 1
Problem Set: 13 17 19 23 26 28 31 34 35 39 41 42 43 44 48 53 57 63 73 78 84
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Significant Digits and Measurement”
POGIL: “Significant Zeros”
Activity: Significant Figures with Calculations
Homework: Significant Figures

Chapter 2: 2.1 - 2.5
Problem Set: 11 13 15 20 25 26 28 30 34 39 41 43 96
Lab Equipment Scavenger Hunt
Observing a Candle
Lab: Measurement and Variation
Precision vs. Accuracy
Density Lab
(all available online)
Demo: Sodium Reacts with Water
Tables 1.4, 1.5 and the Rules for Counting Significant Figures (pg 22)

Z, A, Atomic Symbols, Dalton’s Atomic Theory (pg 38)
Molecules, Ions and Naming Compounds
2 hours
2.6 - 2.9
Problem Set: 45 46 51 53 56 57 58 59 61 63 65 67 69 71 73 75 77 80 81 82 86 100 104 107 110
Supplementary Material:
POGIL: “Naming Ionic Compounds”
POGIL: “Polyatomic Ions”
POGIL: “ Naming Molecular Compounds”
POGIL: “Naming Acids”
Flowchart for Naming Inorganic Binary Compounds

Useful Nomenclature Resources:

Here is a big-picture flow-chart to help you determine whether a compound is ionic or molecular and how to name it no matter what it is. It is available as a PDF download at this link: Inorganic Nomenclature Flow Chart. A useful reference for ion names is the ions reference sheet I created.

Useful links from ChemTeam.info:
Cations/Anions List
Nomenclature Basics
How to Name Cations
How to Name Anions
Big Picture Flowchart for Compounds

  See bold items in tables in Ch. 2
Be able to name polyatomic ions, transition metal ions, ionic compounds, covalent compounds, and oxyacids.
Stoichiometry: Atomic Mass, the Mole, Percent Composition, Chemical Equations
5 hours
Chapter 3
Problem Set: 9 11 12 15 16 20 21 23 26 29 33 35 39 43 45 47 49 51 53 54 55 56 60 61 64 65 68 69 71 72 73 75 78 79 87 82 83 85 89 96 106 110
Size of an Aluminum Atom
Instructions for the Bunsen Burner
Demonstration: The Empirical Formula of Silver Oxide
Lab: Paint Pigments OR
Determination of the Formula of Rust AND/OR
Hydrate Lab
Avogadro’s number (6.02 × 1023 particles/mole) and its meaning
pg 104 Solving Stoichiometry problems
Reaction Types & Rxns in Solution: Water, Solutions, Acid/Base, Redox
6 hours
Chapter 4
Problem Set: Ch 4: 6 8 13 15 17 21 23 25 29 31 33 35 37 39 43 45 49 51 53 55 57 59 61 63 65 73 75 77 79 82 83 86 90 91 95 97 105 108
Supplemental Material:
POGIL: “Types of Chemical Reactions”

Net Ionic Equations Practice
Reaction writing and prediction (not available on-line)
Demonstration: Dancing Flames
Analysis by Gravimetry
Acid-Base Titration
Differences btwn. strong, weak and non-electrolytes; table 4.1 (solubility rules); oxidation states rules pg. 137
Gases: Pressure, Gas Laws, Gas Phase Rxns, Partial Pressures, Kinetic-Molecular Theory
5 hours
Chapter 10
Problem Set: 1 10 13 17 20 23 26 29 32 33 38 41 44 46 47 49 50 52 53 56 59 61 64 65 67 70 72 73 75 76 81 84 91 92 99 106 123
Supplementary Material:
POGIL: “Partial Pressures”
Lab: Boyle’s Law with Vernier Probes (available online)
Demo: Preparation and Properties of Hydrogen Gas
PV = nRT; P1V1/n1T1 = P2V2/n2T2; Dalton’s Law of Partial Pressures; Definition of Mole Fraction; Molar Vol. 22.42 L at STP
1 atm = 760 torr = 760 mm Hg = 1.01325 × 105 Pa
(be able to convert to inches Hg, bar, mbar, and kPa)
Thermochemistry: Energy, Enthalpy, Calorimetry, Hess’s Law
4 hours
Chapter 5
Problem Set: 3 4 7 15 17 19 23 24 25 27 30 33 39 44 47 49 51 54 56 59 63 65 66 67 70 71 74 76 85
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Calorimetry”
Heat and Temperature in Phase Changes
Calorimetry Calculations
Calorimetry Lab
Demo: Dehydration of Sugar
Demo: Boiling
Demo: Dehydration of Sugar Student Worksheet
Demo: Boiling Acetone at Reduced Pressure Student Worksheet
ΔE = q + w,
w = -PΔV,
ΔH = q at constant P,
Hess’s Law

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Second Quarter
and Time
Text Information
incl. Problems
Lab(s) Memory Work
Electronic Structure of Atoms: EM Radiation, Atomic Spectra, Quantum Mechanics, Orbitals
7 hours
Chapter 6
Problem Set: 2 7 13 15 19 22 26 29 34 37 39 44 47 49 53 55 60 62 66 70 73 75 77 84 85 102 105
Pre-lab: Flame Tests due on the first day of the lab
Lab: Flame Tests
Lab: Hydrogen Atom Simulator Do problems 1 - 5 for homework. The rest of the questions will be answered using an online simulator (link is on the lab page). (computer lab)
Pre-lab: Atomic Emission lamps due on the day of the lab
Lab: Atomic Emission Lamps
E=mc2, E = hν, c = λν, quantum numbers, electron configuration method, trends in ionization energy and atomic radius
Periodic Trends: Development of the Periodic Table, Effective Nuclear Charge, Ion and Atom Size, Ionization Energy, Electron Affinity, Group Trends Chapter 7
Problem Set: 1 4 7 12 13 14 17 19 22 23 26 28 31 34 37 39 42 45 48 51 52 55 58 59 61 62 66 69 73 78 91 111
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Photoelectron Spectroscopy”
POGIL: “Periodic Trends”
POGIL: “Advanced Periodic Trends” YouTube Playlist about the Periodicity of the Properties of Elements
   trends in ionization energy and atomic radius
Trends for atomic size, ion size, ionization energy, effective nuclear charge, and electron affinity
Chemical Bonding: Ionic, Covalent, Metallic; Lewis Structures, Electronegativity
7 hours
Chapter 8
Problem Set: 9 12 15 18 22 24 26 33 35 38 39 42 45 47 48 49 51 53 55 59 62 63 64 68 70 71 74 94 110
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Bond Energy”
POGIL: “Molecular Geometry”
Activity: Lewis Diagrams
Lewis Diagrams: Molecules to draw
Home-Inquiry: Crystals
Slime! (Glurch and Oobleck)
Lewis Structures method, pg 315-316
Trends for atomic size, ion size, and electronegativity
Molecular Structure and Polarity: VSEPR, 3-D structure of molecules, molecular polarity
5 hours
Chapter 9.1 - 9.6
Problem Set: 14 15 17 20 23 25 26 27 30 33 35 38 40 43 45 51 52 55 58 61 66
Supplementary Materials:
VSEPR Shapes with PhET Simulator
Lewis Diagrams and VSEPR Shapes
Table of VSEPR Shapes and Modifications
Building Models (hands-on covalent bonding activity) VSEPR model method, pg 348
Solids and Solutions: Intermolecular Forces and Phase Changes, 3 hours
Chapter 11.1-11.6 and Chapter 12 section 12.1, 12.2 "Crystalline and Amorphous Solids", 12.3 first 3 paragraphs plus "Alloys", 12.4 first 5 paragraphs, 12.5 first 2 paragraphs, 12.6, and 12.7 first 4 paragraphs
Problem Set: Ch. 11: 9 11 14 15 16 19 22 2428 30 33 36 38 39 41 43 46 49 52 53 54 58 60 63 64
Ch. 12: 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 37 38 45 117

Heat and Temperature in Phase Changes
POGIL: Types of Solids
Demo: Boiling

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Third Quarter
and Time
Text Information
incl. Problems
Lab(s) Memory Work
Solutions: Energy of Solution Formation, Vapor Pressure, Colligative Properties
5 hours
Chapter 13
Problem Set: 9 14 17 19 22 23 26 29 33 35 36 38 39 42 43 46 48 51 54 56 57 61 63 66 69 74 77 79 82 110
Supplemental Materials:
Group Activity: Graphing Solubility
Freezing Point Depression
Salty Ice and Fresh Ice Cream
Boiling Point Elevation
Demo: Freezing Point Depression
Demo: Heat of Solution
Real Life Chemistry of Marshmallows
Types of intermolecular interaction, Definitions of molarity, molality, percent by mass, mole fraction; Π = MRT
Kinetics: Reaction Rates, Rate Laws, Integrated Rate Laws, Reaction Mechanisms
6 hours
Chapter 14
Problem Set: 2 3 5 9 10 13 17 18 21 24 25 28 33 36 39 42 43 49 50 51 55 58 59 60 61 63 65 68 69 71 73 75 79 83 87
Chemical Kinetics Formula Reference
Demonstration: Introduction to Reaction Rates
Spectrophotometry Basics
Spectrophotometric Determination of a Rate Law
Notes for Kinetics Lab
Rate Laws Summary (formulas, typical graphs)
Kinetics Information Sheet
Equilibrium: Equilibrium Constant, Gas Equilibria, Le Châtelier’s Principle
6 hours
Thermodynamic vs. Kinetic Stability
Chapter 15
Problem Set:1 3 6 8 10 11 13 16 17 24 25 29 32 34 37 41 42 44 46 51 54 57 58 61 64 65 67 73 84 94
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Equilibrium”
Determination of an Equilibrium Constant (Flinn 13)
Equilibrium Post-lab Information
Form of the Equilibrium Constant Expression
Kp = K(RT)Δn; Le Châtelier’s Principle
Acids and Bases: Nature, Strength, pH Scale, Polyprotic Acids, Salts, Lewis Acids
6 hours
Chapter 16
Problems Set: 1 2 3 8 13 15 18 22 23 26 28 29 31 33 35 37 43 46 49 52 55 59 62 67 68 71 74 75 79 85 87 88 91 92 95 98 105 117
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Strong vs. Weak Acids”
POGIL: “Calculating pH”
POGIL: Strength of Acids
POGIL: Polyprotic Acids
More About Equilibria: Common Ion Effects, Buffers, pH Curves, Indicators, Solubility Equilibria
6 hours
Chapter 17
Problem Set: 2 3 5 11 13 15 18 19 22 23 26 29 32 34 35 38 43 46 49 52 53 56 62 63 68 69 73 89 100
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: Common Ion Effect on Acid Ionization
POGIL: Common Ion Effect on Solubility
POGIL: Buffers
POGIL: Titration Curves
Choosing an Appropriate Indicator (Flinn 16)
Additional Instructions for the Indicator Lab
Notes for the Indicator Lab
Demonstration: Bromothymol Blue Acid-Base Indicator
Henderson-Hasselbalch Eqn.; Summary of Buffer Info
Thermodynamics: Free Energy, Entropy, Spontaneity of Chemical Reactions, Work
5 hours
Chapter 19
Problem Set: 1 4 8 10 12 16 19 24 25 28 29 32 36 37 42 43 45 53 58 59 62 65 72 75 77 80 81 83 116
Demo: Thermite
 Demo: Entropy and Probability
ΔG = ΔG° + RT·ln(Q)
ΔG° = – RT·ln(K)
Table 19.4, pg. 825

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Fourth Quarter
and Time
Text Information
incl. Problems
Lab(s) Memory Work
Electrochemistry: Galvanic Cells, Reduction Potentials, Thermodynamics of Electrochemistry, Batteries, Corrosion, Electrolysis
6 hours
Chapter 20
Problem Set: 1 3 5 13 14 15 18 19 21 24 25 29 30 32 34 36 37 40 43 45 48 51 55 58 60 62 65 68 75 84 85 91 92 93 110
Supplementary Materials:
POGIL: “Oxidation and Reduction”
POGIL: “Activity Series”
POGIL: “Batteries”
Demo: Copper to Silver to Gold
Electrochemical Cells and Electroplating (Flinn Kit) ΔG° = -nF E°; Nernst Eqn.
Review: Two weeks of review; practice tests, targeted review to be determined none  
Supplemental Reading Assignment
Organic Chemistry
Supplemental Materials
Electrostatic Potential Maps
 Lab: Soap Making
Lab: Cyanotypes
Demonstration of NI3
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