Understanding the periodic table of the elements

If you’ve studied the periodic table of the elements, you know that there are, well, lots of elements.  Having trouble keeping them straight and remembering their properties?  Check out Periodic Videos from the University of Nottingham’s Chemistry Department.  Each element has it’s own video.  You can watch an (often explosive!) experiment with each element and listen to a mad scientist (complete with crazy hair) explain the element’s properties.  Here’s a video about the very reactive element, potassium, to give you an idea of what to expect from this site.

As you learn more about the periodic table, you’ll begin to understand that it’s organization is meaningful: each element's place within the table can tell you a lot about its properties.  But what if you arranged the elements in a different way?  What other properties of the elements could you use and how would that change the periodic table?  What other periodic tables could you make?  To answer these questions, check out the Internet Database of Periodic Tables where you can find everything from ancient periodic tables to three-dimensional ones.

If you need more information about the periodic table and the elements, you can look at the books on the list below.  Most of them are at a middle-school or high-school level and a few of them include cartoon pictures.

Add new comment