The Story of The Periodic Table - Full Year Course

The Story of The Periodic Table - Full Year Course


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

  • About This Course

    Even today, it’s amazing to consider that all detectable matter in the universe can be assembled into a table of elements organized by a unifying scientific principle. Yet this is what a Siberian scientist named Dmitri Mendeleev confidently proclaimed in 1869, as he created one of the first versions of the Periodic Table of Elements. How did he come to believe that this was possible and accomplish this amazing scientific feat? 


    By synthesizing two centuries of scientific knowledge, Mendeleev saw patterns and relationships lurking amidst the basic building blocks of matter that no one else saw. Mendeleev worked with a belief that everything is related, that there is a scientific principle governing all matter, and that there is some sense behind it all. With this foundation, he was able to unearth a profound idea that changed the world. 


    In the Periodic Table Self-Paced Course, students recreate key experiments of the 18th and 19th centuries to uncover the very idea of atoms, discover that elements are in fact the building blocks of matter, isolate pure elemental gases, and determine the unique properties of these elements, all of which can eventually be interrelated. 

  • 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.