1st November 2002 at 00:00
Chemistry is a truly magical subject. Use the story of wizards and bring it to life with some wonderful, mysterious and enchanting colour changes. Forget test tubes, get the biggest flasks. Amaze younger ones with an alkaline solution, and universal indicator neutralised with dry ice, or the "blue bottle mystery" (alkaline glucose and methylene blue; shaken not stirred) - the blue disappears and re-appears. What of those precipitates such as lead iodide, or the beautiful colours of vanadium salts (yellow, blue and purple) made by reducing sodium metavanadate? Rediscover the alchemist in you, drag out oMI-016-0103ld-fashioned texts, the ones that might have been written by Dumbledore himself, or at least by a chemist that looked like him.

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