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1 FOCUS

Shape-sorter toys fascinate

Objectives Guide for Reading young children. Typically, the children try placing a shape in different

holes until they ﬁnd the right one. They may try to

1.4.1 Identify two general steps in Key Concepts place an incorrect shape in the same hole over

problem solving. • What is a general approach to

and over again. An older child has enough

solving a problem?

1.4.2 Describe three steps for • What are the three steps for experience to place the correct shape in

solving numeric problems. solving numeric problems? each hole on the ﬁrst try. The trial-and-error

• What are the two steps for approach used by young children is one

1.4.3 Describe two steps for solving solving conceptual problems?

method of problem solving, but it is

conceptual problems. Reading Strategy usually not the best one. In this section,

Identifying Main Idea/Details

Under the heading Solving you will learn effective ways to solve

Guide for Reading Numeric Problems, there are three problems in chemistry.

main ideas presented as subheads.

L2 As you read, list two details that

Build Vocabulary support each main idea.

Word Forms Students may benefit Skills Used in Solving Problems

from a reminder that certain key words Problem solving is a skill you use all the time. You are in a supermarket. Do

you buy a name brand or the store brand of peanut butter? Do you buy the

and phrases in each word problem

1-liter bottle or the 2-liter bottle of a carbonated beverage? Do you choose

indicate the unknown quantity and its the express line if there are ﬁve customers ahead of you or the non-express

units. These include how much, deter- line with a single shopper who has lots of items?

mine, what is, find, and how long. When you solve a problem you may have a data table, a graph, or

another type of visual to refer to. The shopper in Figure 1.23 is reading the

Reading Strategy L2 label on a can while trying to decide whether to buy the item. She may need

Think Aloud Some students are con- to avoid certain ingredients because of a food allergy. Or she may want to

know the amount of Calories per serving.

vinced they cannot do word problems The skills you use to solve a word problem in chemistry are not that dif-

because they are too hard. Ask students ferent from those you use while shopping or cooking or planning a party.

to describe the process verbally as they Effective problem solving always involves developing a plan and

attempt to solve a problem. then implementing that plan.

2 INSTRUCT make many decisions. Some of

those decisions are based on

data, like the information on a

food label.

and read the text that opens the section.

Ask students how they would approach

the situation pictured. Ask, What is the

most effective way to solve problems?

(Approaches vary depending on the given

problem; effective approaches are gener-

ally organized and well-planned.)

28 Chapter 1

Skills Used in

Solving Problems

Discuss L2 Section Resources

Explain that the memorization of facts is Print Technology

a relatively small part of learning chem- • Guided Reading and Study Workbook, • Interactive Textbook with ChemASAP,

istry. A person who succeeds in chemis- Section 1.4 Problem-Solving 1.27, 1.29; Assessment 1.4

try has become a good problem solver. • Core Teaching Resources,

Encourage students to share problem- Section 1.4 Review

solving methods and techniques. Dis- • Transparencies, T7–T9

cuss the “supermarket” problems.

Stress that for these problems, unlike

most problems in a chemistry course,

answers can vary and still be correct.

28 Chapter 1

Solving Numeric Problems Solving Numeric

Because measurement is such an important part of chemistry, most word Problems

problems in chemistry require some math. The techniques used in this L2

Discuss

book to solve numeric problems are conveniently organized into a three-

step, problem-solving approach. This approach has been shown to be very Point out that in the laboratory, as well

helpful and effective. So we recommend that you follow this approach as during students’ normal routines,

when working on numeric problems in this textbook. The steps for they are often presented with more

solving a numeric word problem are analyze, calculate, and evaluate.

data than is needed to solve a prob-

Figure 1.24 summarizes the three-step process and Sample Problem 1.1

shows how the steps work in a problem.

lem. Explain that they will need to sort

essential data from extraneous data. In

Analyze To solve a word problem, you must ﬁrst determine where

cases with more than the required

you are starting from (identify what is known) and where you are going

(identify the unknown). What is known may be a measurement. Or it may data, sorting the data into knowns and

be an equation that shows a relationship between measurements. If you unknowns helps students to deter-

expect the answer (the unknown) to be a number, you need to determine mine the answer to “What data do I

what units the answer should have before you do any calculations. need to solve this problem?”

After you identify the known and the unknown, you need to make a

plan for getting from the known to the unknown. Planning is at the heart of

successful problem solving. As part of planning, you might draw a diagram

that helps you visualize a relationship between the known and the

unknown. You might need to use a table or graph to identify data or to

identify a relationship between a known quantity and the unknown. You

may need to select an equation that you can use to calculate the unknown.

usually the easiest part of the process. For some problems, you will have to

convert a measurement from one unit to another. Or you may need to rear-

range an equation before you can solve for an unknown. However, you will

be taught these math skills as needed. There will also be reminders

throughout the textbook to use the Math Handbook in Appendix C.

Evaluate After you calculate an answer, you should evaluate it. Is the

answer reasonable? Does it make sense? If not, reread the word problem.

Did you copy the data correctly? Did you choose the right equations?

It helps to round off the numbers and make an estimate of the answer. If

the answer is much larger or much smaller than your estimate, check your

calculations.

Check that your answer has the correct unit and the correct number of

significant figures. You may need to use scientific notation in your answer.

You will study significant figures and scientific notation in Chapter 3.

summarizes the steps for

Analyze Calculate Evaluate solving a numeric problem.

Predicting In which step do

you make a plan for getting

from what is known to what

is unknown?

How Teachers Solve Math Problems

A Professor of Mathematics at Stanford Uni- The general four-step approach that Polya

versity, G.Polya (1887–1985), wrote a classic outlined in his introduction (understand, Answers to...

book about problem solving in 1945. The plan, try it, and look back) has much in com- Figure 1.24 Step 1, analyze

second edition of How to Solve It is still in mon with the three-step approach for solv-

print. Polya used common sense and humor ing numeric problems (analyze, calculate,

Checkpoint If the calculated

to present problem-solving tactics. and evaluate).

answer is much larger or smaller

than the estimate, check the calcu-

lations.

Introduction to Chemistry 29

Section 1.4 (continued)

Answers

26. 24 short blocks

27. 24 minutes

Discuss L2

SAMPLE PROBLEM 1.1

Write the sample problem on the

board and carry out the three-step Estimating Walking Time

problem-solving approach. Stress the You are visiting Indianapolis for the ﬁrst time. Because it is a nice day,

discipline of writing down the steps you decide to walk from the Indiana State Capital to the Murat Centre

for an afternoon performance. According to the map in Figure 1.25, the

that make the solution possible. You This view of Indianapolis,

shortest route from the capital to the theater is 8 blocks. How many

may wish to use chalk or markers of Indiana, shows part of the

historic central canal in White minutes will the trip take if you can walk one mile in 20 minutes?

different colors for the knowns and River State Park. Assume that 10 short city blocks equals one mile.

unknowns to make the process clearer.

Analyze List the knowns and the unknown.

Stress the importance of evaluating

Knowns

whether the result makes sense. Stu-

• distance to be traveled ⫽ 8 blocks

dents should make an initial mental • walking speed ⫽ 1 mile/20 minutes

estimate to compare with the final • 1 mile ⫽ 10 blocks

result displayed by a calculator. Unknown

• time of trip ⫽ ? minutes

FYI

This problem is an example of what is typically called a conversion

Conversion problems are the most problem. In a conversion problem, one unit of measure (in this case,

common type of numeric problem in blocks) must be expressed in a different unit (in this case, minutes).

an introductory chemistry course. They Divide the distance to be traveled (in blocks) by the number of blocks

will be discussed in detail in Chapter 3. in one mile to get the distance of the trip in miles. Then multiply the

In that chapter, students will learn how number of miles by the time it takes to walk one mile.

to combine the two calculate steps in

Calculate Solve for the unknown

Sample Problem 1.1 into a single step.

8 blocks ⫻ 1 mile ⫽ 0.8 miles

10 blocks

0.8 miles ⫻ 20 minutes ⫽ 16 minutes

1 mile

The answer seems reasonable, 16 minutes to walk 8 short blocks. The

answer has the correct unit. The relationships used are correct.

Practice Problems

26. Using the information in the 27. There is an ice cream shop

Problem-Solving 1.27 sample problem, how many 6 blocks north of your hotel.

Solve Problem 27 with the help short blocks can be walked How many minutes will it

of an interactive guided tutorial.

in 48 minutes? take to walk there and back?

with ChemASAP

30 Chapter 1

30 Chapter 1

Figure 1.25 Refer to this map of

Indianapolis, Indiana, while you

Solving Conceptual

Central

Library do Sample Problem 1.1. Problems

St. Clair Street Interpreting Diagrams

In the section of downtown

American

bounded by north, east, south,

Legion

TEACHER Demo

ue

Mall

en

and west streets, the main

Av

ts

et

us

streets and avenues are named

ch

North Street

sa

L2

as

Veterans

for states. What are the five Fit an Ice Cube in a Bottle

M

Memorial Murat

Plaza Centre

exceptions to this pattern?

Pennsylvania Street

Michigan Street

▲

ONE WAY

Purpose Students suggest different

Delaware Street

Meridian Street

College Avenue

Alabama Street

Senate Avenue

Capitol Avenue

Illinois Street

Indiana

West Street

East Street

World

War

Vermont Street

Memorial

approaches for solving a problem.

Univ.

Park Materials bowl of ice cubes, empty

In

dia

na

▲

ONE WAY

narrow-neck bottle

Av

en

Indiana

ue

Historical

Society ▲ ▲ ▲ ▲

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

Procedure Place a bowl of ice cubes

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

Ohio Street

CANAL

Indiana

▲ ▲ City

Market

▲

and an empty soda bottle in front of

State Monument Market Street

Capitol Circle the class. Explain that the problem is to

Washington Street transfer the ice to the inside of the bot-

▲

ONE WAY

Circle

Center

tle. Have students analyze the problem

N and suggest different approaches.

▲

Indiana

Convention

Conseco

Expected Outcome Students may sug-

Vi

Fieldhouse

rg

ini

a

Av

en

ue

Jackson Pl.

Louisiana St.

Union

small enough to fit through the mouth

Station

of the bottle; or melting the ice, pour-

▲ South Street

ing the water into the bottle, and plac-

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

ONE WAY

Merrill Street

Not every word problem in chemistry requires calculations. Some prob-

lems ask you to apply the concepts you are studying to a new situation.

In this text, these nonnumeric problems are labeled conceptual problems.

To solve a conceptual problem, you still need to identify what is known

and what is unknown. Most importantly, you still need to make a plan for

getting from the known to the unknown. But if your answer is not a num-

ber, you do not need to check the units, make an estimate, or check your

calculations.

The three-step problem-solving approach is modified for conceptual

problems. The steps for solving a conceptual problem are analyze and

solve. Figure 1.26 summarizes the process, and Conceptual Problem 1.1 on

the next page shows how the steps work in an actual problem.

Figure 1.26 This flowchart

shows the two steps used for

1 2 solving a conceptual problem.

Comparing and Contrasting

Analyze Solve With a conceptual problem, why

is the second step solve rather

than calculate?

Answers to...

Figure 1.25 Meridian Street, Senate

Avenue, Market Street, Jackson

Place, and Capitol Avenue

Figure 1.26 Solving a conceptual

problem usually does not require

any calculations.

Introduction to Chemistry 31

10:00 am 8:00 am

to 6:00 pm to 11:00 am

to 3:00 pm

Manny has to run 6 errands between 10 and 5 on

Answers Saturday. He must get a haircut, wash his car, buy

stamps, rent a video, return a library book, and buy 10:00 am

28. The order of the morning errands to 1:00 pm

some groceries. Assume that each errand will take

cannot vary. The order of the after- 30 minutes and that Manny will do only one errand

noon errands can vary, as long as per hour. Manny will stop for a lunch break between 10:00 am

to 4:00 pm

the haircut takes place before 3 pm. 12 and 1. Use the information in the drawing to ﬁgure 7:00 am

to midnight

29. Possible answers: Do an errand out a way for Manny to accomplish all 6 tasks.

during lunch hour or extend the

hours during which he does Analyze Identify the relevant concepts. Solve Apply concepts to this situation.

errands. Each place that Manny needs to visit is open The post ofﬁce and library are open only in the

for a limited number of hours on Saturday. morning. The barbershop and the car wash

Discuss L2 Manny must do his errands between 10 and close earlier than the video store. The super-

Discuss using classification schemes as 12, and between 1 and 5. At a rate of one market is open late. One possible order for the

Practice Problems

errand per hour, Manny must do 2 errands errands is post ofﬁce, library, barbershop, car

tools for organizing information. Ask before lunch and 4 errands after lunch. wash, video store, and supermarket.

students to suggest classification

schemes they encounter in their daily Practice Problems

lives (the ways that goods are orga-

nized in stores or books in libraries). 28. Describe two alternative orders in which

Manny could complete his errands.

29. What if Manny had 7 errands instead of 6? Problem-Solving 1.29

3 ASSESS What would he need to do to adjust for the Solve Problem 29 with the help

extra errand? of an interactive guided tutorial.

Evaluate Understanding L2 with ChemASAP

the three-step problem solving

approach, ask students to suggest ways

to evaluate an answer. (Reread the prob- 1.4 Section Assessment

lem to be sure the answer supplies the

30. Key Concept What are the two general steps

requested unknown; round off the num- in successful problem solving?

bers and do a quick estimate.) 31. Key Concept List the three steps for solving

Compare and Contrast Paragraph Write a para-

L1 numeric problems.

Reteach graph comparing the processes for solving numeric

32. Key Concept List the two steps for solving problems and conceptual problems. How are the

Have students try working in pairs to conceptual problems. processes similar? In what way are they different?

solve problems. One student thinks 33. Read the conversion problem and then answer the

aloud while trying to solve a problem. questions. “There are 3600 seconds in an hour.

The other keeps a careful record of the How many seconds are there in one day?”

process. Then they reverse roles and a. Identify the known and the unknown.

b. What relationship between the known and

work on another problem.

unknown do you need to solve the problem? Assessment 1.4 Test yourself

[icon] Writing Activity c. Calculate the answer to the problem. on the concepts in Section 1.4.

d. Evaluate your answer and explain why your with ChemASAP

answer makes sense.

problem, makes a plan, and carries

out the plan. Problems with numeric

answers require that the answer be

evaluated to see if it is reasonable.

Section 1.4 Assessment

30. Develop a plan and implement the plan. c. 3600 s/h × 24 h/day = 86,400 s/day

31. analyze, calculate, and evaluate d. 86,400 seconds in one day seems reason-

32. analyze and solve able in relationship to 3600 seconds in one

33. a. known: 3600 s = 1 h; hour. The answer has the correct units and the

If your class subscribes to the unknown: ? s = 1 day relationship used is correct.

Interactive Textbook, use it to b. 24 h = 1 day

review key concepts in Section 1.4.

with ChemASAP

32 Chapter 1

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