Friday, October 15, 2010

Fun with the Periodic Table

The periodic table is the theme of the week.  If you teach Chemistry, you might be interested in the new variation on an ancient game, Mahjong.  Students play online or on Facebook (look up Mahjong chemistry). According to the press release, "Games on the website include: matching elemental names to symbols, assigning oxidation numbers, learning acids and bases, learning electronic configurations, and learning metric prefixes critical in chemistry" (Stetson U).

This news led me to the internet to check out periodic tables, a rich theme.  I found a beautifully illustrated periodic table as well as a table of illustrations: the visual periodic table from  The VPT will be featured at our visual media workshop in a few weeks (November 2).

Of course, Chemistry Mahjong is not just a visually appealing activity but a learning exercise.  Game-based learning has a dedicated following (see the International conference at  Games are an excellent way to engage students.  There are downloadable templates for several types of games, which you can adapt to your curriculum.  Just search online!

UT's Professor Ernest Cadotte has created a marketing strategy game, Marketplace, which offers gaming scenarios in international business.

Have you created a game for your students?  What is your experience with game-based learning?

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