AirUCI Program Helps Teachers Teach Chemistry

Uploaded by ucirvinenews on 23.07.2010

>> Well what we're doing, this is part of the AirUCI two-week Summer Institute. It's
the outreach program that they do every year to take some of the high-level knowledge that
they're learning at the University of California under the AirUCI program and getting that
out to the community through high school and junior high school teachers. They get to learn
every day different lectures from some of the experts in the industry here, and then
that knowledge they take into a laboratory environment. And they get to run high-level
instrumentation that some of these researchers are using, get some experience with that;
and our goal is for them to take all this knowledge, apply it to the environment and
atmospheric chemistry, and bring it back to their classes and to their students.
>> We wanted to have something that doesn't require a lot of money necessarily, but has
potentially very large impact. Through teachers we affect all of the students. And when you
calculate how many students you are affecting over several years, it's a very large number.
>> I haven't been in a lab like this in years, so it's really been fun. The advances since
I was in school are amazing.
>> You know, as a teacher, sometimes you go through years and not learn new stuff? Well,
these are the excited teachers that take their summers to learn new things.
>> I like to help my students to see the interactions between the different fields of science; for
example, biology, chemistry and physics. And so when you study atmospheric science, you
see all those three sciences kind of interact with each other.
>> Right now, we're using a high-performance liquid chromatography to separate out a lot
of the compounds that are in cigarette smoke. Lots of bad gross stuff. I can show you: It's
very brown and it smells bad.
>> Most people in their lives never get to see a laser, let alone operate some of the
biggest, baddest, bad daddies of lasers; and so they're using that to blast into different
materials, like lithium ion batteries or looking for pieces of coal to monitor the composition
of those.
>> Put a hole in a lithium battery, a penny right through his head; and then just different
elements like titanium, copper, lead and zinc.
>> I thought it was pretty cool, putting holes in things. Pretty awesome.
>> The thing I'm really excited about is to tell my students there's something else out
there besides being a doctor. All of my students come to me and, if they are proficient in
science and math, they want to be doctors. There is so much more out there than just
the health services. Now health service fields are important. But there is so much more out
there, and I'm excited to take this back to them.