pointing finger animation

The Chemistry of Aspirin

By Robert McClard

Chemistry and internet use.

Type of web activity:
Using data from the web

Materials / Software needed:
Web access

Grade Level:

Time involved:
1 or more hours, depending.

Created on:
August 6, 1997

November 2003

The Web Science Workshop lessons were created in cooperation with the Exploratorium Teacher Institute .


This site developed and maintained by Deborah Hunt and Eric Muller

Exploratorium logo

3601 Lyon St.
San Francisco, CA 94123

© The Exploratorium

Your assignment is to establish the importance of chemistry in our lives through a study of a common medicine --- aspirin).

What to do: Students will look at each site and discover two facts about aspirin that they will share with their classmates in brief presentations. The following questions could be a guide for student searches.

What is the chemical formula for aspirin?

In the picture below what color represents carbon, hydrogen and oxygen?

Can you find all of each type of molecule in the picture below?

Who discovered aspirin?

Who makes money on it?

What are some new uses for aspirin?

Why is aspirin so popular?

A. Internet research:

a. The chemistry of aspirin

b. 3-D ball-and-stick model of aspirin molecule

c. History of aspirin

d. Synthesis and chemistry of aspirin

e. The European Aspirin Foundation

f. General aspirin site

g. Biography of aspirin's inventor

Aspirin chemical composition

B. Links to websites of major chemical producers

C. Federal agencies involved with chemical issues

I. CDC's Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry

II. Consumer Product Safety Commission

III. Food and Drug Administration

IV. Environmental Protection Agency

V. Occupational Safety and Health Administration

VI. Department of Agriculture

D. Materials safety
I. General chemical safety information from Oxford University

II. A collection of Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)

E. The methods of science
I. A class activity illustrating scientific methods

II. An iconoclastic essay: "On Scientific Method"

III. Essay: "Think Like a Scientist"

IV. A comparison of the Socratic and scientific methods

V. Some thoughts on teaching scientific methods

VI. Some consumer topics that could be used to illustrate scientific methods

VII. An exploration of "The Scientific Method"


Back to top

Back to Web Lessons Home Page