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Luminescence in education

Chemiluminnescence reations modified for children

Dieter Weiß1

1Friedrich-Schiller-University, Institute of Organic Chemistry, Jena, Germany

E-mail: c5diwe@uni-jena.de

In many countries, including Germany, conducting chemical experiments in schools has become challenging due to financial constraints, lack of equipment, or, as observed in Germany, excessive safety concerns. Despite these hurdles, children, especially the younger ones, are deeply fascinated by experiments that provide immediate, tangible results. To bridge this gap, the German city of Jena hosts a 'Long Night of Sciences' biennially, inviting the public to explore scientific institutions. During this event, our Institute of Organic Chemistry welcomes hundreds of families, including very young children, to demystify chemistry through hands-on experiments. In my laboratory, we specialize in various forms of luminescence, such as fluorescence, triboluminescence, and chemiluminescence, tailoring our experiments to be safe yet captivating for children. These experiments, some of which are derived from research projects by upper-grade scholars, are designed to ensure even the youngest participants can successfully engage in chemiluminescence reactions without raising safety concerns. If possible, I will present some of these experiments on-site, showcasing the enchanting beauty of chemiluminescence.

Keywords: chemiluminescence, safety, education


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