Lesson Plan

Scratch an Element!

#STEMChallenge Students learn about an element in the periodic table and create an animation using Scratch to communicate their learning.
Donna M.
Classroom teacher
Vista Visions Academy
Vista, CA
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My Grades 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
My Subjects Science, Health & Wellness
EdTech Mentor

Students will be able to...

Know the structure of the atom and know it is composed of protons, neutrons, and electrons.

Use the periodic table to identify elements in simple compounds.

Use computational thinking to create a Scratch animation.

All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook

Activity: Assessing

Present a video about the periodic table that is engaging such as "The New Periodic Table Song,"  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zUDDiWtFtEM

Students complete the "Know" and "Want to Know" columns of a KWL chart and discuss their prior knowledge.

3 Guided Practice

This interactive site can be used to present information about elements and the periodic table to students. They can build elements by exploring the arrangement of protons, neutrons and electrons. They view photos and video clips about each element and can play games and take quizzes to test and apply their knowledge about the information they have learned. 

4 Independent Practice

Students use this website to research their assigned element, gathering information such as:

atomic number

atomic mass



unique properties

5 Wrap-Up

Students create an animation using Scratch incorporating the information they have researched, highlighting the unique properties of their assigned element. They can create an animated Bohr model of their element and create or use the library's sprites to communicate information about their element's properties. Scratch allows for differentiation depending on students' interests and skills. After viewing other students' projects, they conclude the series of activities by completing the KWL chart which they started earlier.