We did our first chemistry lab today. "Solvent extraction," We were trying to separate out the different bits in the iodine solution (according to the manual, it had iodine and potassium iodide).
The first big problem we ran into was the operation of the graduated pipettes. Ours didn't work right. Or, more likely, we couldn't get them to work. Air bubble issues. So Travis ended up using some little graduated cylinders for some of the measuring, and then there might have been some furtive, non-measured pouring, just to get things looking closer to "right."
Also we were short a stopper, and the one Katie gave us, from another kit, was small and kept getting stuck.
well, Travis said, "Maybe we accidentally missed a step, and if we'd done it, something exciting would have happened!"
Still, we didn't blow anything up. That counts for something. On the other hand, I had an hour scheduled for chemistry lab, and it actually took two and a half hours. Some schedule tinkering will be necessary. And, probably more unfortunately, Travis and I are both still a bit fuzzy on what he was up to. Ed had a really good suggestion, though, and we'll do it next week -- he suggested that we look up the experiment on Youtube and watch some competent person do it before we do it ourselves! Might not be quite in the spirit of pure scientific experimentation, but we need all the crutches we can get!
(Travis, taking careful notes in the lab book!)
(mad lab assistant!)
(the last two test tubes on the right have most of the iodide out, I think)
(very tired experimenter)
And we are already down one test tube. Either something ate through the bottom, or I brushed a bit too hard with the cleaning brush.
I'd take studying The Song of Roland or declining Latin adjectives over chemistry labs any day, but we will persevere!