Just before Thanksgiving break, all the general Chemistry students at LHS usually tie-dyed articles of clothing for extra credit, but this year was different.

Due to this year’s snow day, this year’s class of chemistry students were unable to complete the activity in class, but in order to get extra credit, many students came in during the three-day period after break before, after, or during school.

The chemistry teachers, Angie Varca, and Tamara Bretting, set a different day for students to wear their shirts to receive extra credit so that they didn’t have to change the date of the test.

“Students were pretty good about making time,” said Varca.

While wearing an article of tie-dyed clothing gives students extra credit on the final if they wear it the day of, for many students, this was more an opportunity to use what they’d learned in chemistry and have a little fun before break.

Students were given the option of tie-dying traditional t-shirts, socks, or whatever else they decided to bring in the day of.

The tie-dye stations were set up and composed by the advanced placement chemistry kids.

The AP Chemistry students spent much of that Friday before, mixing the chemical compounds to create the colors for the chemistry students to use.

The experiment comes at this time of the year because tie-dye uses covalent bonding, the topic students are studying currently.

“This is the method through with the covalent bonds are able to form,” said Varca.

While bonding is one of the main focuses of the year, covalent bonding is only part of what students will learn, so it’s important that the students are given a chance during this portion of the year as opposed to waiting.

Beyond the class, however, the experiment itself is a lot of fun for many students.

“It gives students to have application to what we learn in class, and also a chance to make something to be proud of,” Varca said.

Chemistry is a hard class, and the little bit of encouragement that can be provided by a guaranteed extra credit on the test along with being able to use something they’ve learned can make a real difference in a chemistry student’s perception of the class.

It also highlights how chemistry is all about real world concepts, and we can observe it in day to day life, as well as maximize what we’ve learned to change our day to day life for the better.

For example, using covalent bonding in tie-dye as opposed to other methods helps the colors shine brighter and last longer than if the bonds weren’t as strong.

Covalent bonds are a very strong method of attaching one thing to another, as chemistry students observed, and anyone can test with their tie-dye.

To make the shirts, students had to follow some special safety procedures, such as wearing gloves while handling the chemicals because tie-dye can be dangerous when misused.