Stick it Together

Learning about adhesives is a real-world experience. Here are ideas to help the experience stick with your students.

To help understand how bonding agents interact with the surfaces being attached, use old slivers of bar soap. Try variations of “gluing” the soap pieces together with water: dry to dry (a control group), wet to wet, and wet to dry. Also experiment with varying amounts of pressure. Let dry for several hours to see what the results are. This real-world application will show students the benefit of attaching a soap sliver to a new bar (ideally wet to dry) instead of wasting the small piece. Estimation problem: how much soap might be saved in your class for a year by using this process.

Glue isn’t just glue
Adhesives are a scientific business, as evidenced by the myriad of types available.Enlist the help of one of your school maintenance people to explain (and possibly demonstrate) the various adhesives they use in the school. Estimation problem: how many different ways are adhesives used in your school?

The glue in you
Brainstorm with your class how food ingredients “glue” together during the baking or cooking process? What food items help hold things together when heated?

Where glue isn’t glue
Research topic: what is RF Heatsealing technology?

The glue holding us together
Writing topic: what are the qualities that bind us together as a society?