The Story of The Periodic Table: Unit 5 - The Periodic Law

The Story of The Periodic Table: Unit 5 - The Periodic Law


Schedule: This is a Self-Paced Course
Grade Span: 6th, 7th and 8th grade

  • About This Course

    In 1869, Siberian scientist Demitri Mendeleev assembled and organized all detectable matter in the universe into the Periodic Table of the Elements. How did he do this? What did he know? 


    Students follow the 200 hundred year journey of discovery, which began in the 1600’s when it was realized that gas, the third state of matter after solids and liquids, may have chemical properties. From here students steer directly into the chemical and physical properties of atoms and begin to chart a course mapping out the patterns under which atoms combine. 


    Each student searches for the inner patterns of matter and the underlying physical principles which seem to govern them.  Students gather information and develop a categorization scheme in order to create their own periodic table of the elements. 

  • Prerequisites

    • Solving for one unknown in an algebraic equation. Ideally, students should have taken or be currently enrolled in pre-algebra or algebra. 

    • Proficiency with graphing. Students can determine a scale for coordinate axes and properly draw and label axes.

    • Familiarity with the scientific method and the ability to design simple experiments.

    • Ability to collect and record data.

    • Ability to maintain an orderly and safe space for small lab experiments. Small amounts of acids are used and small combustion reactions occur, which require careful and patient attention.

  • How a Self-Paced Course Works

    Students advance through a series of really interesting labs. Each lab goes like this:


    • Kid takes materials out of a box 

    • Kid watches a 3-minute video

    • Kid runs a 10-30-minute lab. (Kid is pumped up!)

    • Kid does a lab write-up and a little problem set for quick feedback 

    • Kid notches a win, has brand new knowledge, and moves to the next lab! 


    In addition, there are bonus videos and readings and even a problem set designed to deepen an intuitive understanding of the topics.