Periodic Scrambled Maze#01

Periodic Scrambled Maze#01

Looking for a challenge to engage critical thinking skills in academic chemistry? This periodic table of elements scrambled letters word maze puzzle activates students' critical thinking skills. List of 20 periodic elements' letter paths create a maze like structure within the grid. Letters in the word clues travel in these directions: up, down, forwards, backwards. But, first the word clues need to be unscrambled!

Solve the puzzle:
1. REARRANGE the letters to reveal the correct words hidden in the grid. Record the correct spelling.
2. LOCATE the circled letter (in this case, the letter |A|).
2. TRACE the letter path of the first word. Remember that letter paths travel up, down, forwards and backwards, but not diagonally.
3. REMEMBER: word paths track continuously from the first letter of the first element to the last letter of the last element. Paths do not cross.
4. Students need to ENGAGE critical thinking skills to determine the next word, based on letter clues and the number of words starting with the same letter!
5. TRACK progress by checking off the word clues as they are found

Other classroom ideas:
1. ENCOURAGE independent, self-directed learners: provide students with blank word search grids, located here: blank word search grids, to CREATE unique word search puzzles to share with others to solve. Use this list of 20 words, or their own unique list from the elements of the periodic table.
2. CHALLENGE students to create other puzzles: cryptolists, all forms of crossword puzzles; have them create statements about an element and then create a cryptogram with either: 1) a letter for letter substitution, or 2) an alphanumeric substitution.
3. ACTIVATE students' critical thinking skills: get them to ORGANIZE list of elements by: 1) stability or instability of elemental isotopes, 2) toxicity levels (ordered from least to most, or most to least), 3) atomic number/weight/mass, 4) period, 5) group, 6) ancient/modern, 7) any other category you can think of.

Benefits of solving puzzles:
1. activates problem solving strategies
2. engages critical thinking skills
3. engages the brain