Maker Education

Redesign the Periodic Table

Lesson Summary

In this project, students work in groups to redesign the periodic table. This project is intended to be an assessment of the students' understanding.

Using various materials, students will construct a model of the periodic table, labelling element properties such as name, atomic number, and atomic mass. Students will also practice important skills, such as communicating scientific concepts using academic vocabulary, planning and organizing ideas, revising work based on feedback, and providing constructive feedback to their peers.


Forming Groups

I allowed students to choose their groups, 3-4 people per group, and helped facilitate group creation when needed. Depending on your class, you may want to remove student choice. Some ways I considered making groups was a counting system (count off 1-4 and have students form groups by number) that would result in new groups of students who likely didn't sit next to each other. You could also create heterogeonous groups based off of skills and abilities.

Activities Resources
Day 1 Introduction: Review project outline and rubric, form groups, and define roles. Project Outline & Rubric
Team Planning: Form groups, define roles and expectations, and sign group contract. Group Contract
Research: Conduct research on the elements in the periodic table.
Day 2-3 First Draft & Prototyping: Complete a first draft and prototype.
Final Draft: Make necessary revisions and complete a final draft.
Day 4 Presentation: Group presentations and feedback in a gallery walk with a digital poster.
Group Evaluations: Complete Self & Peer Evaluations. Self & Peer Evaluations

Each group should present their work, and hopefully be proud of what they did! I had students submit their work to a discussion post online to simulate a virtual gallery walk. For accountability, students completed feedback for five groups that identified a "glow" (something they thought the group did well) and "grow" (something they thought the group could improve on). These were seen by each group so that they could reflect on their work (and could be used for revisions).

Self and Group Evaluations

An important aspect of all group work is to set a time for reflections. Students should evaluate how they think they contributed and how they think their group members contributed.