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5 Ways to Memorise the Periodic Table - wikiHow

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How to Memorise the Periodic Table


The Basics Mind Tricks Origins & Patterns, etc. The Entire List Printable Periodic Table

Uh oh. Theres a chemistry test coming up and your teacher wants you to memorize the entire periodic table of the elements . Great. But luckily, with a bit of time and dedication, you can make recalling the table like recalling the alphabet. Itll be as easy as A, B, C!

Method 1 of 4: The Basics

Print out a copy of the periodic table. This will be your Bible for the next couple of weeks. Wherever you go, it will go with you. Its advisable to print out more than

one copy. You can highlight and code one however you want and use the next to start over or check if your devices have worked. Print out a copy. Then, especially if youre a visual or kinesthetic learner, copy it down yourself. Its easier to know the ins and outs of something youve done yourself; the chart will seem less foreign if its made by you.

Breakdown the table into smaller sections to learn it. Most charts are already divided by color and type of element, but if thats not working for you, find your

own way. You could go by row, column, atomic weight, or simply easiest to hardest. Find patterns that stick out to you.

Zap into your free time. Try learning the periodic table when not much else can be done, e.g. traveling by public transport or just waiting in the line for something.

If you dont have the chart handy (which you should), go over it in your head, concentrating on the ones that are eluding your memory. Stick with it! Learn a few every day and always review the old ones! If you dont review and quiz yourself, you will forget.

Method 2 of 4: Mind Tricks

Create associations. For each element, memorize a short slogan, story or fact that is related to the metal you need to memorize the symbol for. For example,

Argentina was named after the metal silver (Argentum -- Ag) because when the Spanish landed there, they thought that the country had lots of silver. Sometimes, you might make something funny to remember the element -- for example," EY! YOU! Give me back my GOLD!" could help as well since the

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symbol for gold is Au.

Go for mnemonic devices. That means youll be using words to associate with each element. They often come in strings or rhymes. LIlly's NAna Kills RuBbish

CreatureS FRanticly is an example of a mnemonic device to help remember the alkali metals. Ignore the easy ones. Youre probably pretty confident that hydrogen is "H." Concentrate on the ones that are giving you grief. Heres an example: Darmstadtium is "Ds," right? If you want a mnemonic for that one, try "DARN! STATS for my game were all lost on my Nintendo DS because the power went out!".

Use pictures. Many people with ridiculously good memories use pictures to associate. Why does everybody know that A is for Apple? Our brains associate

words with pictures automatically. Assign each element with a picture -- anything that makes sense to you. Give the items in your house an element. Label them. Lets say your chair is hydrogen. Label it with a hydrogen bomb, picturing it blowing up. Give your TV a mouth -- its oxygen and its breathing. When you go to take your test, close your eyes and walk through your house, recalling all your associations.

Memorize in song. If Daniel Radcliffe can do it, so can you.[1] You can either create your own or go on the internet and watch the gems that others have And just for people like you, there are karaoke versions, too, to help you check your progress. Isnt the internet amazing?[2]

created. If you thought one version is a lot, youll be pleasantly surprised.

Method 3 of 4: Origins & Patterns, etc.

Know the Latin names. All symbols can be regarded as English abbreviations, except for ten that have Latin names and abbreviations and one (Wolfram) whose

name can be considered of German origin. Excluding Antimony and Tungsten, these are all important and frequently used elements. Knowing the Latin names as well enables you to decipher most Latin names of inorganic chemicals. In most Romance languages (French, Italian, Spanish, etc.), the present day word is derived from the Latin>

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Zero in on the differences. Element symbols tend to have two letters. This is the full list of element symbols that have only one letter:

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Except for may be V, W and Y, these are all important elements on this table. The symbols D and T (not in this list) are sometimes used for the heavier isotopes of Hydrogen (H). D2O is heavy water.

Know which ones come in threes. Elements may have three letters, though. You are probably not required to learn these. These are all highly radioactive,

newly discovered (created) elements, that are likely to get new names when the discoveries are confirmed. Professional chemists often dont use these names either, they call it "Element 113" for instance. Just for the heck of it, here is the full list:

Spot the unique ones. The last elements that got their names are Flerovium and Livermorium, 114 and 116, whose names were changed from Ununquadium and

Ununhexium respectively.

Method 4 of 4: The Entire List

Printable Periodic Table

Sample Periodic Table

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Tips
Some websites offer quizzes on the periodic table. If you dont have a friend nearby to help, its a good alternative. You probably wont be asked about the newer, man-made elements. These are newly discovered, man-made, radioactive and possible dangerous. Elements beyond 112, except 114 and 116, have not even been named, and scientists right now know little about what they can be used for. The noble gases in their correct downward order are important because of their electron configuration. Test yourself with learning which elements are metals, non metals and the groups the elements are in the what a set of elements are known as, e.g. the noble gases and alkaline metals. Repeat them in your head over and over wherever you are.

Warnings
Remember that the first letter of a symbol is a capital letter and the letter/letters after the capital letter are lowercase. Be careful not to mix up the elements with the wrong symbols! You have to know them together.

Sources & Citations


1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1TfPDlA1xE 2. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded& v=kvjmD2-aXLs

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Article Info

Categories: Chemistry Recent edits by: Molly, AJ, Hailey Girges In other languages: Italiano: Come Memorizzare la Tavola Periodica degli Elementi, Espaol: Cmo memorizar la tabla peridica, Franais: Comment mmoriser le tableau priodique des lments, Portugus: Como Memorizar a Tabela Peridica, : , : , Deutsch: Das Periodensystem auswendig lernen

Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 171,227 times.

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