Classroom Experiments

Disclaimer! The safety information provided is basic. Risk assessments have been made available for selected experiments, but it is the responsibility of the person carrying out the experiment to carry out their own risk assessment for each individual circumstance. The Solar Spark does not take responsibility for any incidents or accidents as a result of these activities.

You can find classroom experiments related to solar energy here. Also check out our activites and experiments ‘For Home‘ as these can also be great for the classroom. We have compiled a  Sourcing Equipment page for information about where you can get some of the kit needed for these experiments.

Chris LLoyd, SSERC’s Chemistry Education Support Officer, has kindly compiled a list of Links to the Scottish Curriculum for each of the experiments below. Where possible we have tried to indicate the age group and subject area each experiment is suitable for, however these are just suggestions and you may have your own ideas about how they fit into the curriculum! We’d love to hear from you if that is the case, so please do get in touch!

Gratzel Cell
Make a Grätzel Cell 
Make a cell the way scientists do in the lab but using household items such as raspberries!
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Physics, Chemistry, (Biology), investigations and projects.
Instructions: PDF Word
Teachers’ NotesPDF  Word
Equipment ListPDF  Word
TemplatePDF  Word
Risk Assessment:PDF  Word
Solar Cell in a Straw2
Solar Cell in a Drinking Straw
 
Make a photoelectrochemical cell in a straw using drinking draws and raspberries! A 45-60 minute activity.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, (Physics), (Biology), investigations and projects.

Instructions: PDF
 Word
Teachers’ Notes: PDF  Word
Equipment List: PDF  Word
Risk Assessment:PDF  Word
Magic dye
Magic Dye
 

A fun and colourful experiment to investigate bonding and dyeing of different materials.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, (Biology), investigations and projects, Fashion and Textiles

Instructions: PDF
 Word
Teachers’ Notes: PDF  Word
Risk Assessment:PDF  Word
Chlorophyll fluorescence
Chlorophyll Fluorescence
 

An activity exploring light absorption in plants and fluorescence.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Biology, Chemistry, (Physics), investigations and projects.

Instructions: PDF
 Word
Teachers’ Notes: PDF  Word

Anodising Ti
Anodising Titanium

Exploring the relationship between light scattering and colour through anodising.
Suitable for: Key Stage 4/5 and S3-6
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, investigations and projects, Craft and Design, Art

Instructions: PDF
 Word
Teachers’ Notes: PDF  Word
Risk Assessment:PDF  Word
Electrochemical writing
Electrochemical Writing

An activity exploring the reactions at electrodes in an electrical circuit.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, Physics, investigations and projects,
Instructions: PDF Word
Teachers’ Notes: PDF  Word
Equipment List:PDF  Word
Absorption
Solar Cells and Absorption

Exploring the relationship between light and absorption in solar cells.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Physics,  (Chemistry), investigations and projects

Instructions: PDF
 Word
Equipment List:PDF  Word
Circuits
Solar Cells and Circuits

Exploring series and parallel circuits in relation to solar energy.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Physics, (Chemistry), investigations and projects, Electronics, Electrical Engineering
Instructions: PDF Word
Equipment List:PDF  Word
Electrochromic polymer
Electrochromic Polymer

A polymer that changes colour with voltage. Check out the RSC website for this experiment
Suitable for: Key Stage 4/5 and S4-6
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, investigations and projects


Nylon610_2
Condensation Polymerisation

Make nylon from a diamine and a diacid chloride.
Suitable for: Key Stage 5 and S5/6 (or as a demo for all ages)
Subjects: Science, Chemistry, (Physics), investigations and projects.

Instructions: PDF
 Word


acetates
Acetates

Demonstrating how putting the colours together gives us the full picture.
Suitable for: All
Subjects: Science, Physics, Chemistry, investigations and projects.
Instructions: PDF
Magenta:PDF
Cyan:PDF
Black:PDF
Yellow:PDF