CCA Previews’ 23: Alchemy Club

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By Marcus Chu Jian-Hao (Chairperson, 23S03L), Chi Junxiang (Vice Chairperson, 23S03L), Jonelle Tan Wen Qi (Secretary, 23S03D), Matthew Lim Kin-Shuen (Exco Member, 23S03A), Athen Lee Zhi Yu (Exco Member, 23S06I)

Welcome to Alchemy Club! In the past, Alchemists were concerned with the transmutation of matter. In particular, they were attempting to convert base metals into gold. Of course, while Au-some, those attempts were unfortunately futile. Although the art of alchemy is no longer practised and has evolved into modern-day chemistry, the sense of curiosity and passion alchemists embodied is still present and alive today. Alchemy Club (whose name pays homage to the alchemists of the past) is where chemistry enthusiasts like YOU meet to discuss everything and anything about chemistry. Do you conduct your own chemistry experiments at home, spend your free time reading Wikipedia pages or watching chemistry videos (like Nile Red?) or just enjoy “magic”? Perhaps your chemistry lectures leave you with no reaction? Then look no further, for Alchemy Club is just the place for you!

: CCA Previews’ 23: Alchemy Club
Alchemy club takes alchemy to a whole new orbital!

As the wise saying goes: “Chemistry is an experimental science”, and naturally, here in Alchemy club, we have endless experiments! Get your hands dirty as we create au-some memories through hands-on learning. This year, we carried out a wide range of activities from producing polymers (Nylon and Rayon) to extracting caffeine from coffee beans. We even conducted food science experiments like extracting anthocyanins from purple cabbage, tempering chocolate and making ice cream! Who knows? These activities might just turn you into the next Singapore Masterchef! With such a fun range of activities, we hope to explore the wide and wonderful world of Chemistry with you. After all, alchemy is a chance to brew unique items and more importantly, have fun.

We created our own pH indicator by extracting anthocyanins from purple cabbage

Concerned about not getting the reaction you want? Don’t fret! We hope to make Alchemy Club fun and enjoyable for alkynes (all kinds) of people, regardless of how much chemistry you know — all you need is an open mind and a burning passion for chemistry. Irrespective of your chemistry grade, or the number of golds you earned in chemistry olympiads, we can assure you that you can be in your element. In fact, we take special care to cover content different from Olympiads and the normal H2 A level curriculum, as well as of a suitable difficulty level. That way, in every session, everyone is able to learn something new! 

This year we conducted theory presentations on food, explaining the chemistry behind different kinds of wines, baked goods, and the chemistry that gives seared steaks their delicious taste (Maillard Reaction)! We even presented radioactivity and nuclear chemistry, as requested by some chem-physics enthusiasts. With feedback forms sent out at the end of every session, there are clear channels for you to voice your opinions on what you want to see during sessions . You can be assured that in Alchemy, sessions are often tailored to suit your tastes and preferences.

For those looking for a CCA to attend periodically, we hear you! Alchemy sessions are held on Mondays, from 16:30-18:30, in the classrooms (for normal theory sessions) or the chemistry labs (for practical sessions). Unlike other CCAs which may have multiple sessions a week, Alchemy only has sessions once a week, perfect for those with a hectic schedule*! Before being allowed to join alchemy, you will be required to come for a trial session, to better understand what alchemy sessions are like. You will then need to write a session proposal (don’t be put off by this! Just do your best). While we rarely give homework, during our regular sessions, you might be required to give group presentations (of all the sessions we plan to have in 2023, we have only scheduled one group presentation). Overall, we are quite laid-back and here to have fun in all ways chemistry!

Alchemy can change how we see chemistry in life.

We are a close-knit group of chemists who love a fun experiment in the afternoons, and we hope you can join us in our weekly sessions of endless fun. We guarantee that with us, your doubts ar-gon; whether you are looking for like-minded peers to bond with or  are di-ene to share some Chemistry knowledge, Alchemy has a spot for you. In all, regardless of your ability level in chemistry, Alchemy welcomes you with open arms. With an open heart and mind, we are confident that your experience in Alchemy will be memorable. So, don’t forget to keep your i-on Alchemy Club, for we will surely turn your experiences into gold!

*Disclaimer: we hope you remain engaged during our sessions (don’t worry, you will!)

(see below for more photos!)

Athen really hopes for you to join us!

Photo Gallery:

Happy members with their banana concoction
Chocolate tempering experiment

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