Laboratory Classes on the Wonders of Chemistry

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Point three in the Mitsui Chemicals Group Social Activities Policy is, “Do its bit to nurture future generations, on whose shoulders the future rests.” In order to further this goal on a global basis, the Mitsui Chemicals Group launched the Laboratory Classes on the Wonders of Chemistry program.

Since 2006, we have organized various types of classes, from off-site classes, whereby members of staff from each of our sites go out to local schools, summer vacation events and festivals, to those held during tours round our works and research centers.

Taking into account the interests and opinions of the participants, the Laboratory Class themes are determined and developed by the Head Office and the Sodegaura Center. Relevant business divisions at Head Office are producing manuals on laboratory content and management and providing support for events organized at various Group sites in Japan and other countries. Additionally, leaflets that encourage children who have participated in laboratory experiments to take a more in-depth look at chemicals used at home have been published in response to external expert recommendations and these are being distributed to participants.
The program has also been registered as a group supporting Saturday Educational Activities Program sponsored by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.

Donation of children's experiment kits

Although we had to refrain from holding our annual experiments and classes both at our sites and elsewhere due to the COVID-19 pandemic, experiment kits have been donated to local schools to offer children the experience of conducting in a new experiment style.

Children's experiment kits being donated
Children's experiment kits being donated

Laboratory Classes on the Wonders of Chemistry Experiments

*Experiment titles are subject to change.

Experiment title Description
Foamy urethane experiment

FieldChemical reactions

Related Group productsIsocyanate, Polyol

Participants watch urethane, the uses of which include cushion materials, pillows and refrigerator insulation, being foamed and experience reaction heat and differences in hardness
Slime
- Making your own slime
- Making jumbo slime together
- Shiny slime
- Slime ball

FieldPolymer properties

By making "slime" (i.e. cross-linking polyvinyl alcohol with water using borax), participants learn that water can be confined and about the gels around us in our everyday lives
Light experiments with polarizing plate

FieldLight

Participants learn about the passage of light through a kaleidoscope fitted with a polarizing plate that converts natural light into linear light, as used in mobile phones and other such devices
Chromatography art

FieldAdsorption and separation

Participants learn that the ink in a water-based pen contains a mixture of various different colors (pigments)
Plastic board

FieldPolymer properties

Participants learn about the properties and separation of plastics, by using the heat shrinkable properties of polystyrene to make their own original accessories
Let’s make Cartesian divers!

FieldBuoyancy

Participants learn about buoyancy and pressure, by making a Cartesian diver from a PET bottle and a plastic soy sauce container
Let’s investigate the properties of aqueous solutions using red cabbage

FieldAcids and alkalis

Using anthocyanin extracted from red cabbage, participants investigate the properties of everyday liquids and learn about acids and alkalis
Let’s make an air freshener using spongy polymers

FieldPolymer properties

Related Group productsNonwoven fabrics

Participants learn about the principle of water retention, by making an air freshener from a water-absorbing polymer, as used in disposable diapers, gardening supplies and other such products
Let’s make a rainbow tower

FieldSpecific gravity

Participants learn about the specific gravity (relative density) of fluids, by pouring colored waters with varying concentrations together to make a tower
Let's make a freezer!

FieldHeat of solution

Related Group productsUrea

Participants learn about the principle of heat adsorption via the heat of solution of urea, as used in such products as fertilizer and moisturizing cream
Learn how bubble bath works!

FieldReaction of acid and salt

Participants learn about how carbon dioxide is produced, by making bubble bath from baking soda and citric acid
Learn about acid rain!

FieldAcids and alkalis, Oxidation / reduction

Participants learn about acid rain and what causes it, by measuring the pH using red cabbage extract and conducting a bleaching experiment using iodine
Let's make paper!

FieldRecycling / Making paper

Related Group productsAcrylamide

Using everyday implements, participants experience paper recycling from old paper and learn about papermaking and recycling
Let's make small objects from melted plastic!

FieldPolymer properties

Related Group products General thermoplastics

Participants learn about the properties of thermoplastics, which melt when heated, by using a glue gun to melt resin and make small objects
Experience the wonders of shrinking films!

FieldPolymer properties

Related Group productsFilms, PET, etc.

Participants learn about the principle of heat shrinkage, by using shrinkable film to attach labels and make their own PET bottle
See the power of air!

FieldHydrodynamics

Participants learn about air resistance, by observing air rings emitted from an air cannon
Let's make snow on pine cones!

FieldCrystals

Related Group productsUrea

Participants learn about crystal deposition, by observing dissolved urea being sprayed onto pinecones and drying
Let's make light like a firefly!

FieldEnzymes

Participants learn about the difference between bioluminescence and chemiluminescence by making light using each of luciferase enzymes taken from fireflies and using mineral-based chemicals
Let’s try and absorb oil!

FieldPolymer properties

Related Group productsTAFNEL™

Participants learn about the principles and how to use adsorbent materials, by absorbing only the oil from mixed oil and water substances They also learn about the impact on the environment of oil spillage
Expand? Shrink? Disappear?!
Let’s look into the properties of mystery plastics!

FieldPolymer properties

Related Group productsABSORTOMER™

Participants learn about the properties of a variety of plastic films, by taking steps to expand, shrink, and dissolve various plastics. They also learn about changes in polymers (plastics) attributable to temperatures
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