Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Specific Heat - Section 2: Engage


Frayer models are a great tool to help students master important vocabulary terms.  I find that they are especially helpful for my English Language Learners who tend to have a more difficult time with science vocabulary.

  • Although Frayer models are a great tool they are time consuming so I only use them for really important terms.
  • For this unit I choose to have students perform Frayer models for the terms exothermic and endothermic.  I do so because these are two very important terms AND students often confuse the two with each other.
  • I have students record the definition, facts/characteristics, examples, and a picture/model for each of the two terms.
  • Students often have an easy time with the definition and examples (which they take straight from their notes), but have more difficulty with facts/characteristics and a picture/model.
    • To help students with the facts/characteristics I tell them to come up with some things that help them know that a reaction is exothermic or endothermic.
      • For example they may say that exothermic reactions will make the surroundings feel hot, or if a phase change is exothermic the particles release energy.
    • To help students with the picture/model I tell them to draw what a reaction looks like, what the system/surrounding looks like, or to draw an energy diagram for the reaction.
      • For example students may draw a fire for an exothermic reaction or draw energy going from the system to the surroundings.
  • Here is an example of one student's work.  Notice how they added in the energy diagrams for models after we discussed as a class.

  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Frayer Models for Vocabulary
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Specific Heat

Unit 5: Unit 6: Energy
Lesson 6 of 9

Objective: Students will be able to explain the concept of heat capacity and how to figure out the amount of energy transferred between substances through taking notes, performing practice questions, and participating in demonstrations.

Big Idea: Heat capacity is the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of a substance and can be determined through experiments and calculations.

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2 teachers like this lesson
Science, Chemistry, Exothermic Reactions, specific heat, heat capacity, calorimetry, heat, temperature
  95 minutes
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