Mole Day: Celebrating chemistry in an unusual way

By Heather Lavers
Roncalli Central High
Port Saunders, Newfoundland

Students with whiskers and black noses, playing games like pin the nose on the mole, mole-ing and a scavenger hunt.

No, this is not a pre-school at playtime -- it's a high school classroom where this year's chemistry 3202 class are having their Mole Day celebrations.


You may ask yourself, just what exactly is Mole Day? In chemistry, a mole is a quantity of a substance containing as many molecules as there are atoms. The number representing the mole is 6.022 1023. Therefore, Mole Day is celebrated on October (the tenth month), on the 23rd day of this month, from 6:02 a.m to 6:02 p.m. This year's class celebrated on the 22nd because the 23rd fell on a Saturday.

Every year there is a theme for Mole Day. This year's theme was "It's a Mole World". There were songs, jokes and t-shirts centered around that theme. The students put up a Mole Wall of Fame in the lobby of Roncalli Central High to which past and present Chemistry students could sign their name. They had a crowning of the ‘Mole' King and Queen and they closed their ceremonies by releasing balloons in front of the school.

Christine Wu, a Grade 10 student in the class said, "I really like it. This gives us a break from class to have a little fun and learn something new at the same time."

Mole Day is celebrated during National Chemistry Week every year.

"It offers chemistry teachers a chance to put some fun into science and at the same time make it a learning experience," says Connie Powell, a Chemistry teacher at the school. "For me, Mole Day is one of my favorite events. Students continue to impress me with their enthusiasm and ability to catch on to a day filled with ‘mole-fic' opportunities!"

Next year when Mole Day comes again, contact your local chemistry teacher or the National Chemistry Society of Canada to find out more about its various activities. You can even invent your own activities. Try to make it bigger, better and more enjoyable every year .