Chemistry Merit Badge
Activity Guide for Patrol Leaders
Home / Previous / Next /
Teaser / Prerequisites / Study Hall / Activity / Field Trip /DeBrief

Other Resources

C) Prerequisites - Scouts
Work to be done prior to program start:

ChemistryMerit Badge D) Study Hall

The purpose of this section is to facilitate an opportunity for scouts to research and learn about key concepts relevant to this subject. They need to be prepared to explain these to the counselor.

While some scouts may be adept at self-study, others may do better in a small group setting and taking notes on worksheets. You can facilitate discussion by asking them why each of the principles intruduced here would be relevant.

    Req #1: Safety Requirements:

      a. Describe three examples of safety equipment used in a chemistry laboratory and the reason each one is used.
      b. Describe what a material safety data sheet (MSDS) is and tell why it is used.
      c. Obtain an MSDS for both a paint and an insecticide. Compare and discuss the toxicity, disposal, and safe-handling sections for these two common household products.
      d. Discuss the safe storage of chemicals. How does the safe storage of chemicals apply to your home, your school, your community, and the environment?
      MSDS #1 - Kelly Moore Paints - Flat 14 Frost
      MSDS #2 - ArborJet Insecticide - AzaSol.

    Req #2b: Separating Elements
    Describe how you would separate sand from water, table salt from water, oil from water, and gasoline from motor oil. Name the practical processes that require these kinds of separations.

    Req #2c: Chemical Reactions
    Describe the difference between a chemical reaction and a physical change.

    Req #4: Chemical Similarities
    Do EACH of the following activities:

      a. Cut a round onion into small chunks. Separate the onion chunks into three equal portions. Leave the first portion raw. Cook the second portion of onion chunks until the pieces are translucent. Cook the third portion until the onions are caramelized, or brown in color. Taste each type of onion. Describe the taste of raw onion versus partially cooked onion versus caramelized onion. Explain what happens to molecules in the onion during the cooking process.
      b. Describe the chemical similarities and differences between toothpaste and an abrasive household cleanser. Explain how the end use or purpose of a product affects its chemical formulation.
      c. In a clear container, mix a half-cup of water with a tablespoon of oil. Explain why the oil and water do not mix. Find a substance that will help the two combine, and add it to the mixture. Describe what happened, and explain how that substance worked to combine the oil and water.

    ChemistryMerit Badge Req #5: The Four Divisions of Chemistry
    List the four classical divisions of chemistry. Briefly describe each one, and tell how it applies to your everyday life.
    Five Branches of Chemistry -

    Req #6: Chemical Pollution
    Do EACH of the following activities:

      a. Name two government agencies that are responsible for tracking the use of chemicals for commercial or industrial use. Pick one agency and briefly describe its responsibilities to the public and the environment.
      b. Define pollution. Explain the chemical effects of ozone, global warming, and acid rain. Pick a current environmental problem as an example. Briefly describe what people are doing to resolve this hazard and to increase understanding of the problem.
      c. Using reasons from chemistry, describe the effect on the environment of ONE of the following: 1. The production of aluminum cans or plastic milk cartons 2. Sulfur from burning coal 3. Used motor oil 4. Newspaper
      d. Briefly describe the purpose of phosphates in fertilizer and in laundry detergent. Explain how the use of phosphates in fertilizers affects the environment. Also, explain why phosphates have been removed from laundry detergents.

    Req #7: Chem Lab Field Trip
    Note: Option b available if you cannot do a chem lab field trip (a, c, or d):
    Do ONE of the following:
    b. Using resources found at the library and in periodicals, books, and the Internet (with your parent’s permission), learn about two different kinds of work done by chemists, chemical engineers, chemical technicians, or industrial chemists. For each of the four positions, find out the education and training requirements.


ChemistryMerit Badge E) Patrol Activity

    Req #2a: Copper Sulphate
    Predict what would happen if you placed an iron nail in a copper sulfate solution. Then, put an iron nail in a copper sulfate solution. Describe your observations and make a conclusion based on your observations. Compare your prediction and original conclusion with what actually happened. Write the formula for the reaction that you described.

    Req #3: Cartesian Diver
    Construct a Cartesian diver. Describe its function in terms of how gases in general behave under different pressures and different temperatures. Describe how the behavior of gases affects a backpacker at high altitudes and a scuba diver underwater.
    WikiHow - How to build a Cartesian Diver in 9 easy steps.

F) Field Trip

Req #7: Chem Lab Field Trip
Note: Option b available if you cannot reach a chem lab (a, c, or d):
Do ONE of the following:

    a. Visit a laboratory and talk to a practicing chemist. Ask what the chemist does and what training and education are needed to work as a chemist.
    c. Visit an industrial plant that makes chemical products or uses chemical processes and describe the processes used. What, if any, pollutants are produced and how are they handled?
    d. Visit a county farm agency or similar governmental agency and learn how chemistry is used to meet the needs of agriculture in your county.

Chemistry Merit Badge G) Program Debriefing

After completion of the above activities you may need a work session to finish completion of the merit badge worksheet to document the results of your visits, activities and the people you interviewed about potential career opportunities in this field.

H) Extra Credit

The Chemistry merit badge was one of the original 57 merit badges issued by the Boy Scouts of America in 1911.

J) Chemistry Famous Quotes:

    William Ramsay (1852-1916) - The country which is in advance of the rest of the world in chemistry will also be foremost in wealth and in general prosperity.

Search MainTour
Destination - Theme - Activities

Chemistry Merit Badge
Official Merit Badge Book

Chemistry Merit Badge

Chemistry Merit Badge
CHEM C3000
is the ultimate chemistry set. This kit includes all of the components for running over 300+ experiments.

Utah Ticket Promo Discount

Transform Your Child's Room with Fathead today!

BSA Fieldbook
BSA Fieldbook
Outdoor Trek Guide

Based on experiences of millions of Scouts and leaders, this book holds essential information for every outdoor enthusiast. A comprehensive reference, this handbook includes sections on trek, preparation and adventures, appreciating our environment, and more.

FunTicket – 2 Free Games
Bass Pro Shops - Go Outdoors Event & Sale

MainTour Chemistry Merit Badge is not affiliated with
Boy Scouts of America
or any other scouting organization.

Life is a long lesson in humility. - James M. Barrie (1860 - 1937) - Your ticket to explore the real world.
Copyright 1997-2015 :
Email: any comments to improve this program.