Chemistry is an integral part of science subjects and is almost indispensable in our daily life. However, studying this subject is not at all easy. Ask a chemistry student and you will get an idea! Chemistry is itself a huge and vast field.
No one man can explore it all even if he or she spends their whole life on it. There are so many divisions and subdivisions of this subject many of which are overlapping with each other and hence complicated to understand.Only a student of this tough subject knows how they deal with its toughness and difficulties.
In chemistry, a student hardly comes across anything that is very easy. This subject demands a very sharp brain, analyzing powers and a terrific memorizing ability from its students. Going deeper and deeper into most theories in chemistry leads us to physical laws on which they are based. Further analysis is not required by chemistry. In fact, it is not possible as this would only make this subject vaster.
Hence, going into details and understanding the physical reasons would be a waste of time. So, most laws and rules of this subject have to be memorized thoroughly for a quick knowledge and exploring further. This is the reason why chemistry seems so difficult to handle. You have to keep on registering every law, every atomic number, atomic weight, valency, structure, etc. without wasting time by questioning them. So enhancing memorizing power is essential before starting to study serious chemistry.
There are several tough parts and concepts in chemistry to be memorized. An essentially critical and complicated one of them is Periodic table. Any chemistry student will agree that they have to go through lots of troubles while memorizingperiodic table.
Periodic table as you may know, is a tabular way of writing names of elements depending upon their chemical properties and then dividing and subdividing them into groups, like p-block elements, s-block elements, d-block or transition elements, etc.
In a periodic table, all the elements written in a specific column has similar chemical properties. Now, remembering this sequential order of elements and memorizing which place is occupied by which element is easier said than done.
Some important facts about periodic tables that you need to know are:
- It is best to remember the structure of this table in this way that there are mainly18 columns and 7
- However, not all of these 126 places can be filled, as no elements exist which can be placed in those empty spaces.
- In first row, there are only two elements which are, Helium (He) occupying the last or 18thposition and hydrogen (H). H is a very odd element. It shows two opposite kind of properties each under different conditions.
- For this reason, H can be placed either in first position or in17th The former is however widely preferred.
- In second and third row, all positions from 3rdto 12thare empty. Rest are filled with s-block elements on the left of this void and p-block elements to its right.
- From 4th row, however all places are filled up perfectly. Those elements which occupy positions amongst 3rd to 12thplaces are called transition or d-block elements.
- Now, third positions of the last two rows are a bit different. These positions are not occupied by one element but by more than one rather 15 elements. These are mainly heavy elements and those in last row are radioactive and mostly manmade.
- All of first and second columns are occupied by s-block elements. P-block elements hold right to the 13th to 17th 18thcolumn is occupied by all inert gases.
Before, you begin to thoroughly memorize a periodic table keep these norms and rules in your mind. They will help you to remember which position is meant for what kind of element.
Secret methods to memorize this hard table –
- Atomic numbers
These numbers play a basic and vital role behind positions of an element in periodic table. Atomic numbers are the number of protons in atom of an element characterizing it.
Hydrogen with atomic number 1 occupies first position, while those with atomic numbers 2, 3, 4 and so on. Elements are filled in this table from left to right order.
- Chemical properties
They determine position of an element in this table. Elements with considerably same chemical properties occupy same column in periodic table. So knowing chemical properties of all elements vividly is necessary to learn periodic table well.
Electro-positivity and electron affinities are important properties in this case. Electropositive elements occupy positions upto13thplace and electronegative ones come from 15th place onwards. If an element is inert then without any doubt, it will occupy a position in 18thcolumn according to order of atomic number. Most of the radioactive elements occupy the third position of last row.
- Electronic configuration
This isa very important concept which not only helps us to memorize which element should be placed in which position, but also allows us to know reasons behind the existence of those empty spaces in this table.
Electronic configurations are based on quantum mechanical model of atoms which talks about energy levels and sublevels and how many electrons are occupying those levels in an atom of the element concerned.
For example, electronic configuration of carbon is 1s22s22p2, while that of sodium is 1s22s22p63s1. These, ‘s’, ‘p’, ‘d’, etc. are names of energy sublevels of each main energy shells viz. 1, 2, 3, etc. of an atom and their superscript expresses number of electrons occupying that level.
In shell 1, there is no division, just ‘1s’and in shell 2only two subdivisions, viz. 2s and 2p. Thus number of subdivisions is not same in each shell rather they increase with shell number. This discrepancy is the reason behind all void spaces in middle of a periodic table.
- The fun ways
After having known all these main properties working behind positioning of an element, you can begin to memorizeperiodic table. You will find that it is more meaningful that memorizing a few letters arranged in tabular form and you will slowly begin to find interest in it. To strengthen all that you memorized, you can play a simple game with your friends and classmates. Draw a correct empty periodic table on a paper.
One by one throw a small object; say a pin on this paper with eyes closed. Wherever on this empty table your pin will land, you have to say the name of element which is supposed to be there at that position.
You will earn a point each time you get a correct answer. If you can master this game, be sure that you know a periodic table best.It is hard to memorize a poem, but is quite a lot easier to memorize and remember a song. Use this fact to memorize your periodic table.
On the Net you will find songs and poetries which consist of names of elements in order of periodic tables. They are designed for students to memorize periodic tables. If you listen to those songs thoroughly like you listen to a jazz or a pop, each and every beat, every tune will remind you of an element and you will be able to remember that order.
These above-mentioned ways are definitely going to prove useful for you if you are struggling with periodic table. If you have already mastered it, no problem as you still have more challenging hurdles to face.
After dealing with periodic table of inorganic chemistry, you soon have to come across organic chemistry. If troubled do not hesitate to surrender to 10 excellent methods to pass in organic chemistry. In this way, you are going to make an impression in the class with higher grades in exams.