Google The Unplanned Homeschooler: periodic table
Showing posts with label periodic table. Show all posts
Showing posts with label periodic table. Show all posts

Thursday, June 21, 2018

How is THAT element used?

We all know oxygen is essential for respiration for most of the animal kingdom, and carbon is the essential building block of all living things. We know mercury is commonly used in thermometers, and calcium is responsible for strong bones. But did you know that your car might not start if not for antimony? Or that Rubidium is essential in the functioning of the GPS system so many of us rely on today?

The more you know about the elements of the periodic table, and how they relate to YOU, the better they will stick in your long term memory. A while back, I shared a favorite book, The Periodic Table: Elements with Style, that personifies the elements in ways that can help students get to know them better.

This week, I want to share another resource, the Periodic Table Matching Game by The Unplanned Homeschooler, currently on sale through the Learning Tangent marketplace for just $2.99.

This fun game is reminiscent of the classic Memory games we all played as kids, but uses real world enformation and colorful illustrations by Keith Enevoldson, an engineer who had me swooning at the concise and colorful way he made the periodic table so relatable.

Using the Periodic Table Matching Game, your students can learn each element's name, symbol, atomic number and even how each element is used in the real world. The game is available in a convenient download. Just print the pages on cardstock and cut out the cards, then play with as many or as few cards as you like.

Study by groups or periods, study just the nonmetals, the transition metals, the noble gases, etc. There are so many ways to study the periodic table using this exciting game. Make chemistry more fun and memorable by adding the Periodic Table Matching Game to your collection of resources.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Getting to know the elements of the periodic table

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Elements of the periodic table, homeschooling chemistry

Are you raising a child who tends to personify everything? I was one of those kids. I remember with almost embarrassing clarity one boring afternoon in my preteen years when I determined the gender of the numbers 0 - 9. For whatever reason, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8 and 0 were boys, and 1, 4, 6, and 9 were girls.

I'd like to say with authority that there is strong scientific evidence that associates this sort of behavior with creative genius, but that would require scouring psychological journals. Speaking simply from experience though, I can say that my own tendency to personify things helped me to learn, especially when it came to science.

I assigned personalities to everything from different species of animals to various types of bacteria and even the elements of the periodic table in my mind. I think that's why I was so excited to find a complete set of the Basher Science books at a secondhand store a few years ago.

One of the Basher books is called The Periodic Table: Elements with Style, and it allows readers to meet and get to know the personified elements, complete with characteristics you would expect based on how they appear and react in nature. Sodium, for instance, gets along with everyone but is really high strung, sulfur is a prankster dressed sweetly in yellow, and iron is "at the center of everything."

Imagine my excitement when I realized, after recommending the book to our local co-op class, that there is a newer version, with more elements, each with its own descriptive page! It's titled, The Complete Periodic Table: More Elements with Style.

If you have a child who is interested in learning more about chemistry, you need to check out this book, currently on sale for 45 percent off the list price, but I don't know how long that will last.

Associating human characteristics with inanimate objects really has been a good way for me to learn and retain information over time. I believe the Basher Science books about the periodic table can help cement this information in your child's long term memory, too!

Monday, May 25, 2015

Free video lessons on the periodic table

You're going to want to share this post with all your homeschooling friends, especially those who are about to start teaching physical science or chemistry.

I was a bit of a chemistry nut. I spent the summer of my eighth grade year auditing a chemistry class at the local university, and the next summer volunteering as a lab assistant for a professor who knew how to get students excited about science.

I think most kids like chemistry, because its fun! Things change colors and explode, liquids become solids or gases, and everything happens right before your eyes. It's like magic, but with the answers right there at your fingertips if you're just willing to learn the secret formulas.

Parents are often afraid to teach chemistry, though, and this can lead to their kids being scared to learn. You don't want your kids to be afraid to learn about chemistry. You want them to be excited. Well, I just stumbled across a free tool that can help both you and your kids get excited about chemistry, one remarkable element at a time.

A team from the University of Nottingham put together a set of videos and lessons on the TED-Ed platform featuring the elements of the periodic table. They're called Periodic Videos. Starting off with a boom, you and your kids can learn all about hydrogen, the smallest element, and work your way through the periodic table one at a time until you've learned about them all.

I just finished watching the videos for hydrogen, oxygen and carbon, three of the most important elements in our world, and even after years of chemistry classes, I actually learned a thing or two I didn't know before.

If you register on TED-Ed, you and your students can take quizzes and learn even more after watching the videos. And it's all free! This resource would be a great way to introduce young kids to the periodic table, even before they are proficient readers, and a terrific supplement to any chemistry curriculum you are using for older students.

Please share this free resource with other homeschoolers, especially those who are feeling nervous about teaching science. It's just one of the many ways they can have fun with chemistry while educating their kids at home.