Dr. Emil Lozanov is a chemist who shares the wonder of chemistry with middle school science students through educational demonstrations. As an ACS Science Coach, Lozanov hopes to increase middle school students’ science and math skills by visiting several schools in the greater Detroit, Michigan, area.
Using magic demonstrations to inspire students, Lozanov, who also teaches at Wayne State University, shows students that chemistry is more than a textbook science—it’s also entertaining. Through exciting and colorful presentations, he captures students’ attention and creativity and encourages them to think of chemistry as more than a challenging school subject. Going beyond the typical chemical demonstration show, Lozanov uses his time with students to show kids that “magic is an application of scientific principles, and chemistry is fun." He strives to further engage students through interactive dialogue that enhances their analytical thinking and mathematics skills. As a result of his experiments, they ask the crucial “How can it happen?” question, which opens doors for progress in their interest and understanding of science.
Assisting in several schools, Lozanov has the privilege to meet a variety of teachers and students who are excited by his passion. Many students write to thank Lozanov—letters that he proudly keeps. In the 2013-2014 academic year, he received 161 notes of gratitude from sixth and seventh grade students who stated that their comprehension of and excitement for science has increased due to his presence in their schools. For example, one student wrote to Lozanov, “I normally don’t like science, but you made it fun for me.”
Why he does it:
When asked why he volunteers as an ACS Science Coach, Lozanov replies, “Inspiring chemistry demonstrations that are designed to have puzzling effects and create curiosity are something all grades of students like. The demonstrations spark an interest, motivate the students, and introduce and visualize chemistry principles.”
Advice to those considering becoming ACS Science Coaches:
Sharing with students his science knowledge and passion is an endeavor in which Lozanov takes great pride, and he hopes more chemists will too. “Your time and efforts will be rewarded. You and the students will learn. What’s better, as professionals, we can help to inspire science and chemistry. There is no better feeling.”
Interviewed July 2014.
ACS Science Coaches
ACS Science Coaches are chemistry professionals who share their expertise and enthusiasm for science with an elementary, middle, or high school teacher over the course of one school year.