Can Acids And Bases Remedy The Body?

Bev Tatum Beethoven Elementary
25 West 47t St.#432
Chicago IL 60609
(312) 535-1480

Objective: This lesson can be adapted for grades (2-7) and can be extended over three (3) or four (4) class periods. Students will be able to: 1. Determine how an understanding of acids and bases relates to their personal bodies. 2. Determine the effectiveness of various antacids or home remedies on an acidic stomach. 3. Determine why some analgesics cause additional stomach upset and are not recommended when only pain persists. 4. Evaluate the cost effectiveness of one form (or brand) of antacid/analgesic over another. Materials needed: Students will work in groups of four (4) or five (5). vinegar Pepto Bismo (tabs) Bayer (Pain) pH indicator paper Maalox (tabs) Riopan (liquid) paper towels Alka Seltzer Maalox (liquid) water Tums (tabs) Pepto Bismo (liquid) eye dropper Generic (tabs) Generic (liquid) plastic chem trays Rolaids (tabs) 5 oz. cups toothpicks Bayer Aspirin pH indicator scale/ spoons Generic Aspirin per group lemon juice flour milk ginger ale baking soda Strategy: A human stomach can become too acidic or too basic and will result in becoming upset. Since the stomach level is normal at a pH of 7 (similar to water pH), make an "upset stomach" with a mixture of 1 part vinegar to 8 parts water. 8 oz. of any mixture mentioned is enough for 4 groups. Cut indicator paper into 1/4" to 1/2" pieces instead of using the whole 2" pieces provided in the kit. Activity 1: Tests the effects of each antacid tablet/water mixture upon the "upset stomach. Use 2 tab. per 8 oz. of water for 6 different tests. First, place 10 drops of "upset stomach" in the well on the chem tray and then add 5 drops of a mixture (i.e.TUMS). The students should test and record the pH level of the TUMS before adding it to the "upset stomach". Activity 2: Students will test liquid antacids upon the upset stomach. Activity 3: Students will test the effects of analgesics upon a "normal" stomach. Remember just use plain water here as the stomach (pH 7). Activity 4: Students will test unlabeled home remedy mixtures i.e. flour/water, lemon/water, milk, baking soda/water, and ginger ale. After each group of tests, discuss with students their results. Activity 5: Provide the children with the costs of a dosage of each tests (TUMS-$.37/tab) and let them evaluate the cost effectiveness. SAFETY TIP: REMEMBER TO TELL STUDENTS IF AN UPSET STOMACH IS REALLY PAINFUL A DOCTOR IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Note: Teacher will need to create his/her own data sheet for recording information.
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