International Year of Chemistry, 2011

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A Series of Chemistry Popularization Workshops

Activity by Brijesh Pare   |   added on Nov 03, 2010   |   India Official_iyc_logo

Sponsor(s): Association of Chemistry Teachers c/o Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, Mumbai

For Indian Middle, High and Secondary level school students and Teachers. Organizations of chemistry popularization workshops by quizzing the students of Indian school of class 7th to class 12th and Teachers. In India we propose to conduct 10 such workshops during IYC - 2011

Introduction; Among all the scientific disciplines chemistry seems to be particularly worried about its public image. Indeed, popular associations with chemistry range from poisons, fire hazards, chemical warfare, and environmental pollution to alchemical pseudoscience, sorcery, and mad scientists. Despite repeated campaigns for convincing the public that chemistry would bring health, comfort, and welfare, chemists frequently meet with hostility in popular culture. As student enrollment numbers has been shrinking, chemistry departments have been closed in several countries. Also in humanist culture chemistry has a very low profile; philosophers in particular keep to their traditional neglect of anything related to chemistry. More recently, in response to their public image, chemists have tried to launch slogans such as ‘green chemistry’ or even dropped the term ‘chemistry’ altogether and adopted more fashionable labels such as ‘materials science’, ‘molecular science’, or ‘nanotechnology’. Chemistry is both the most useful and the most fundamental of all sciences. Moreover, chemistry is taught in such a manner that instead of developing interest in the subject, students start fearing it. Consequently the most talented students do not appreciate the importance and relevance of chemistry.

In the light of these difficulties we have envisaged a program to initiate  chemistry popularization among Indian students and  science/ chemistry teachers.


Aims of the Workshops

(1)      To inculcate interest in the students for further study of   


(2)     To promote and encourage an awareness of the nature and relevance of chemistry amongst school   students.

(3)     Emphasizing the connection between the academic image of chemistry and its day to day applications in the home, the environment and industry.

(4)     To provide a major focus for school students on the relevance of chemistry in an exciting and stimulating way.

(6)     The workshop  will indicate to students the important role chemistry has to play in our society.

(7)     It will help increasing problem solving ability and observation.

(8)     Students will have the opportunity to improve their knowledge of chemistry.

(9)     Recently many state boards, ISCE and central board of secondary education (CBSE) in India have made a paradigm shift in typology and pattern of questions. The format change will affect most subjects including Maths, Social Science and Science and Technology, Physics, Chemistry, Biology. The exam paper will be designed to assess Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS). HOTS will require the students to interpret, think, analyze and synthesis for answering the questions. With this it has now become the need of the hour to impart school students’ some specific training to enhance their analytical, thinking and interpreting skill rather than a simple rote learning based exercise. We anticipate that the participation in workshop will help students to learn  to solve Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) based questions.

(10)   To reorient teachers about the science teaching. How to prepare questions for different levels to make chemistry teaching   interesting and entertaining.

(11)    Teachers should not only inform but also entertain. Teaching is, in many respects, an art. Teachers must strike the right balance between sometimes opposite demands. On the one hand, they should lead students to scientific insights; and on the other hand, their teaching should be attractive. Effective teaching followed by quizzing will help them to achieve these two aspects. Students appreciate both, as they have stated in a series of interviews. Teaching is, of course, a major instrument to diffuse chemistry.

Modus Operandi

The workshop will start with a popular lecture on key contributions of chemistry , to developing human knowledge, advancing economic progress and in sustainable development.    The art and science of chemistry will be highlighted.

There will be an interesting chemistry  quiz for the students and for the science/chemistry teachers, of course separately.  Later Questions of the quiz will be discussed with the students and teachers together. Next day teachers will be asked to frame such questions on specific topics. Later these collected questions will be discussed with the teachers and published in a booklet form after adequate editing. We are going to use  the questions from Australian National chemistry quiz  collection book conducted annually by Royal Australian chemical institute, Australia. To conduct these workshops we propose to invite Professor Charles Fogliani, Adjunct Professor, Charls Sturt University, NSW, Australia who is a  renowned chemical educationist. He may be present in the first few workshops.

Target participants

The workshops will be held for students of class 7 and 8, Class 9 and 10, Class 11 and Class 12 and science /chemistry teachers. We anticipate the participation around 30 schools in each workshop. Twelve   students and two science/chemistry teachers from each   participating  school.  With this we intend to energies 360 students and   60 teachers through each workshop. Overall there will be 300 schools, 3600 students and  600  science teachers.

The Venues

The probable/tentative venues of the workshops will be, any ten places of  the following IACT zones.


Western Region     

Pune, Goa, Surat,  Vadodara, Navi Mumbai

Northern Region   

Delhi, Ludhiana, Faridabad

Central Region      

Bhopal, Raipur,  Bhilai, Indore, Jaipur , Jodhpur

Southern Region

Banglore , Belgaum,  Chennai, Chidambaram, Hydrabad, ,   Kakinada, Kurnool, , Pondicherry

Eastern Region

Darjeeling, Koraput, Dahaligaon, Patna

North east Zone

Guwahati, Dahaligaon



Information about resource persons for the proposed program





Prof Charles Fogliani

Adjunct Professor

Charles Sturt Uni,NSW, Australia

Dr.S. R. Gadre


University of Pune, Pune

Prof. Udai Maitra


IISc, Bangalor

Prof. Saiprakash   

Adjunct Professor

  Osmania Uni, Hydrabad



I  C T, Mumbai

Prof M Swaminathan


University of Annamalai, (TN)

Prof. D V Prabhu   

Adjunct Professor

Wilson College, Mumbai

Dr. Savita Ladge   

Olympiad Cell

HBCSE, Mumbai

Prof. Sudhakar Babu


SK University, Anantpur

Prof. S P Kamat     


University of Goa

Dr.Sunita Bhagat


ASRD College, Delhi Uni, Delhi

Dr. Hemant Pandey

Asso Professor

Hislop College, Nagpur

Dr. Brijesh Pare


Madhav Sci P G College, Ujjain

Dr . Nitin Sapre    


SGSTIS, Indore


Dr. Ibnu Saud


MG university,Kottayam

Prof AA Siddique


Motilal J college, Navi Mumbai

Dr.S B Ghoderao


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Topic: workshops, hands-on activities, art, sustainable and green chemistry, competition Audience: students, educators, professors, teachers, secondary schools, educational institutes, high schools, middle schools, higher secondary schools
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