Opinion of teachers of prestigious schools in Moscow on which chemistry textbook is the best.

Before I started making this site, and two years before I wrote the article about the selection of materials for the Chemistry Olympiad, in the summer of 2021, I was preparing for the entrance exams to the Moscow chemistry schools.
In the end I got into the 8th grade of the 1501 Chemistry School, and although I have already written about it, I will repeat: it really is one of the best schools in Moscow.
I got into the Chemical Corps specifically, but the school has an excellent French Corps, an excellent German Corps, and a lyceum for high school students, and the school has been on the list of the top twenty schools in Moscow in terms of graduate performance for many years.
My class teacher was a chemistry teacher, a real professional with a university education.
I didn’t go to my current school in the 9th grade because they didn’t teach me well in 1501.
But before I took the chemistry exams, I had to figure out, just as I do now, what textbooks to use to study.
I happen to have quite a few chemistry books.
Probably a hundred of them.
These are school and university textbooks (Glinka), this is Chemistry in Action by Fremantle, this is Chemistry in the Center of Science by Brown and Limey, and a bunch of other books.
These books were collected by my dad and they came to the library mainly from two sources.
1. The used bookstore at the House of Books on Leninsky Prospect, which seems to be closed now, and
2. Books written off from Moscow libraries.
(If anyone does not know, Moscow libraries have been writing off books 3-4 times a year for several years now.
You need to register, and you can order 10 books for one account, these books will be found by libraries, and will wait for you in the library for 3 days).
Anyway, I have a plethora of books piled up, and it has become difficult to choose which one to start with.
«One chemistry I take, another I put on the table, the third I note, the fourth I see…» — as (almost) sang the heroine of one of the cartoons
My dad and I decided to ask Moscow teachers for help in choosing the main book.
I took pictures of some of my books, Dad wrote a letter, and we sent it to the schools.

Chemistry textbooks from the library of Egor Kugno

On the websites of Moscow schools there are bound to be photos and biographies of the teachers.
But there are a lot of teachers at school, even in chemistry, and communication with them is not official.
Usually, if there is a teacher’s e-mail address on the school website, it is a personal e-mail address, and it is unknown how often a person checks it.
So we decided to write to the principals of the school e-mail address of the school in Moscow is always listed on the website, it is definitely checked daily, if not by the principal himself, then at least by his helpers.
The text was as follows:
Hello, Dear Principal of the School.
Please forward this letter to the Best Chemistry Teacher.
Good afternoon and hello.
At a family meeting, we decided that my son should make an effort to study chemistry.
My son is moving into 8th grade and hasn’t had chemistry yet.
We drove around the libraries (where they are now distributing books), went to the House of Technical Books on Leninsky Prospekt (there is an excellent department of booksellers) — and gathered a good library of chemistry.
Looking through all the textbooks — we decided to start with Shelinsky.
The son in June, read it from cover to cover — without solving problems — but the textbook was quite heavy.
Since July my son has been studying Gabrielian and solving the problems that he understands (for now it’s solutions and moths).
Please, if it is not difficult for you, tell me which of the existing textbooks — from your point of view — is worth reading after Gabrielian?
Presentation style of all authors is different, the depth of presentation is also different, so the question-what would you advise to read a high school student who is going to enter your school in Grade 9?
Regards, Alexei Kugno.

We have sent about 20 of these letters.
There are about 50-60 strong chemical schools in Moscow, and there are non-chemical, but incredible schools, judging by the success of their graduates, such as 1568 named after Neruda, which repeatedly became winners of international chemistry Olympiads.
However, Moscow is a very big city, and I would have to get to many schools at least one and a half, or even two hours one way.
Good to learn with such time consumption, with daily getting up at 5.30 and returning at 18 hours — is simply impossible.
So in sending out the letters, we mainly focused on schools within an hour’s drive from home.
I will post some of the responses below,
All of them were given by the teachers of the best schools in Moscow, and I believe that the advice of good teachers is always worth listening to.
I will not publish personal information (this is forbidden), but in case this article is read by any of the teachers, whose answers are published here, I want to say a huge thank you to them for their hard and very important work.
Thank you so much!
1. Good afternoon!
1) To study the basics of chemistry in grade 8-9, I can recommend KMK Kuznetsova N.E.
2) And I will recommend you a popular science book, which is sufficiently accessible language, tells about the main issues of chemistry. Andrey Shlyakhov. Chemistry on the fingers.
2. Good afternoon!
Regarding chemistry textbooks for eighth-graders:
In our school, students study chemistry with textbooks by the author’s team of MSU: Eremin, Kuzmenko, Lunin: Chemistry. Grade 8.
At the moment, I consider it one of the good-quality textbooks.
You can also recommend the textbook by Kuznetsova, Titova, and Gara: Chemistry. Grade 8.
These two textbooks are close in logic to Shelinsky’s textbook.
Shelinsky’s textbook is a thorough textbook, but it is no longer in reprint, so you can really find it in the bookseller’s department.
There are two key topics in 8th grade: «Basic Classes of Inorganic Compounds» and «The Periodic Law. Structure of the Atom.»
In terms of the level of assignments, you can be guided by the assignments, including control works, of the workbook Yeremin, Shipareva, Drozdov: Chemistry. Grade 8.
Workbook for the textbook V.V. Yeremin et al. with test assignments for the Unified State Examination.
You can also recommend materials N.E. Deryabina «Chemistry. The basic classes of inorganic substances.», «Mendeleev’s periodic system.
To expand the idea of substances and chemical reactions can be recommended popular science magazine «Chemistry and Life», some articles will be available and interesting to anyone who begins to learn chemistry.
3. Good afternoon!
I forwarded your questions to my chemistry teacher.
He replied that he personally really likes the textbook by Kuznetsova and Levkin, as well as the problem book to it.
At the same time he noted that it is important to understand the main goal of the child in the in-depth study of chemistry (which university is planned to enter, participation in the Olympics movement, etc.).
In this regard, I think it is better for you to find answers to your questions in a personal phone consultation.
He is waiting for your call.
4. Doronkin OGE chemistry thematic training, Doronkin steps to the IEP and OGE 8th grade chemistry thematic training (there is both theory and assignments).
We study by Rudzitis.
5. Good afternoon. Your son is very good. The Gabrielyan textbook is quite complicated for independent study. In our gymnasium we work with the Rudzitis textbook. The Khomchenko textbook is written in very clear language and has a problem book.
6. Good afternoon! For chemistry, try Kuzmenko’s and Eremin’s books. Or Gabrielyan (also a good one).
7. Hello! We are starting chemistry in grade 8. We work with textbooks by the Moscow State University’s collective of authors V.V. Eremin, N.E. Kuzmenko, and others. I can advise you to focus on modern editions, rather than second-hand books, because some sections of the school chemistry course have been substantially updated in recent years.
8. Good afternoon!
I will try to answer your question about textbooks for independent study of chemistry.
It is very commendable that your son has independently studied the textbook by O.S. Gabrielyan and learned to solve problems on solutions and «moles. Of the books that you have, I would recommend the manuals by A.S. Yegorov. Not everything, but you can look at examples of solving calculation problems, study the topics «Hydrogen», «Oxygen», «Sulfur», «Phosphorus», «Iron», «Copper», «Alkaline metals». Don’t take organic chemistry just yet. The classic textbook is Glinka’s General Chemistry. I think it is worth working with it during the school year, to supplement the material of the lessons on certain topics, but again, not to read everything in a row. For the month of August I would recommend reading «Entertaining Chemistry,» «Journey into the World of Chemistry,» to develop an interest in the subject in your son.
At our school, in 8th and 9th grade, we study chemistry using the textbooks by G. E. Rudzitis and F. G. Feldman. These textbooks, as well as the textbooks by Gabrielian, correspond to the basic chemistry program for secondary school.
In order to enter the 9th grade at our school, one must have a good grasp of all the topics that are outlined in these textbooks.
Olympiad preparation is necessary to achieve high results in chemistry. I highly recommend that you begin by parsing the 8th grade high school Olympiad assignments from the assignment archive at olimpiada.ru.
9. Hello.
Sending you the perspective of a good chemistry teacher.
Studying chemistry in 8th grade is extremely important at a normal level, because this is the base on which later in 9th grade they start to put in depth, and without this base it will be difficult for a child, although, with due diligence, it is possible to catch up if in 8th grade chemistry did not work out.
I don’t really like it when a child starts reading something in chemistry on their own ahead of time (like reading the entire 8th grade chemistry textbook before 8th grade chemistry even started) — it’s more of a detriment.
I have a lot of examples when a child, having read so many textbooks, then does not perceive the material of the lesson, thinking that he already knows everything and in the subject, but misses important nuances and then begins to lag far behind the rest.
Starting to read developmental literature in parallel with the study of chemistry in 8th grade is another matter.
Of the textbooks, I definitely don’t recommend Gabrielyan — he is extremely unsystematic, but for a minimal base will do.
A good series of textbooks are by Eremin and Drozdov. There is also a good 7th grade textbook by Shymanovich.
For the 9th grade, you can read Homchenko. There is also a textbook by Manuilov and Rodionov «Fundamentals of Chemistry», but here you have to choose what to read (it is available in electronic form in the public domain). From the problem books I recommend the series Kuznetsova, Levkin.
From those that are on the photo: «Chemistry basics» by Glinka is better left till the 9th grade (at least we sometimes send them in the 9th grade, but in general this is a textbook for the 1st year of non-profile institutes), «Chemistry Simulator» is interesting, but rather for older grades, «Chemistry in action», «Journey into the world of chemistry» and the like are very interesting books, but again from the 9-th grade.
10. Dear Alexey!
I send you the answer of a chemistry teacher
For such an inquisitive and motivated student, I would recommend buying or downloading the book «Chemistry Tutor» edited by A. S. Yegorov.
Very accessible and concise is the explanation of the material from the very basics. Also, after the theory there are a lot of assignments that he can solve to consolidate the theory.
In addition, I recommend the textbook Chemistry 8th grade, by V. Eremin. V., Kuzmenko N. E.
Thank you for your interest in our school.
11. Good afternoon.
I am a chemistry teacher who teaches the subject in specialized medical classes.
You are absolutely right — the author of each textbook presents the material in a slightly different way. That is why it is extremely important to «get in» with the author — the child’s perception of the material in the manner of the author’s presentation.
I like the line of textbooks for grades 8-9 by a group of authors, one of whom is V.V. Yeremin. These textbooks are available at the MASHE and do not need to be specially purchased.
12. Good afternoon. Sorry for the delay in replying. Vacation, you know, caught up?.
It’s nice to meet parents concerned about their children’s learning and proficiency.
As a teacher, I would recommend the 8th grade textbook (Novoshinsky I.I.) and for practicing the skills of writing equations-problem book on chemistry 8th grade (avt. Kuznetsova).
Note that the topic «Theory of Electrolytic Dissociation» we pass in grade 9. So it can be skipped.
But it is desirable to pay close attention to Chapter VI (The most important classes of inorganic compounds).
See you in the school year!
13. Good afternoon. There really are a lot of chemistry textbooks and educational literature. The perfect chemistry textbook, in my opinion, does not yet exist.
There is a line of textbooks from teachers of chemistry at Lomonosov Moscow State University — V.V. Eremin, A.A. Drozdov, and N.E. Kuzmenko for grades 8 and 9, and there is also their book — Eremin. V.V., N.E. Kuzmenko, «Beginnings of Chemistry,» which covers the entire school course in chemistry, it has a different level of complexity of exercises and problems.
There are notebooks on different sections of chemistry, such as Deryabin N.E. General chemistry. The structure of matter.
For preparation for the Olympiads there are also many good books, but you must first lay the foundation.
I wish your son success in mastering such an interesting and wonderful science — CHEMIS.
And I was especially pleased with the following very kind and inspiring letter, for which I want to say a special THANK YOU to Adila. С.
14. Good afternoon!
Our director forwarded your letter to me asking about a chemistry textbook.
It is great that your son is interested in this subject before he begins studying it at school.
If, as far as I understood from your letter, your son is serious about chemistry (not at school level), then I definitely recommend the textbook by Eremin, Kuzmenko «Beginnings of Chemistry». It is not easy (it says «for those entering high school», but in fact kids with a good general level from 8th grade can master it [not all chapters at once, Of course, (Part I can be mastered within the framework of the 8th grade, Part II after a clear mastering of Part I, and Part III to the 10th grade need not be touched), I give separate excerpts from there to interested children] or you can start with the textbooks of the same authors for grade 8. They are written (especially Beginnings of Chemistry) in an interesting way, and they present the most fundamental knowledge that allows you to achieve an in-depth understanding of the subject.
Gabrielyan is not focused on gaining in-depth knowledge (there the profile only starts strong from 10th grade).
As for our school: our school curriculum is based on the Rudzitis, Feldman series of textbooks, and if we are talking about what is best for matching the curriculum, it’s them.
The good school textbooks are «Khomchenko’s problem book» with green balls on the cover (this is a higher level), Kuznetsov’s problem book is for each grade and has different-level problems, which is convenient for independent work.
If you go the Olympiad route, there are a lot of compilations, there are versions of past years available online, the same problems from «Beginnings of Chemistry» after each paragraph. I recommend to take part in all kinds of Olympiads (Moscow Olympiad, All-School Olympiad, Lomonosov Olympiad, Conquer the Sparrow Hills, All-Siberian Olympiad, etc.), which helps to develop enthusiasm and interest to the subject.
I wish you success!

One of these answers was from school 2107, the one where I study now.
And it was this answer, and further careful study of the school’s website, reviews of the school, and attendance at the Open House that led me to this school.
In general, summing up the article, I want to say that the teachers at Moscow schools are not only outstanding professionals, but also simply wonderful people.
Almost all of them answered to us, and frankly we didn’t expect so many answers.
I hope that those who will read this article will find something useful for themselves.
And at the same time look at other materials on this site, in my opinion, the best site on chemical and medical education:)

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