Nerdy Mom Makes A Periodic Table Battleship Game To Teach Her Kids Chemistry

While we adults can learn all the chemistry we need in life from Breaking Bad, it's still pretty tough to get kids interested in elements. For starters, the periodic table wasn't exactly designed with kids in mind. 

But a mom has come up with a ingenious way to get her kids interested in Rutherfordium and Darmstadtium. After Karyn Tripp found it difficult to help her kids memorize the table, she thought turning it into a game might help — and periodic table battleship was born. 

Karyn Tripp


To make the game, Tripp printed out four copies of the periodic table. Then, starting at the top left corner, vertically labeled the rows alphabetically. You can then laminate the tables if you want to make the game re-usable.

Finally, glue the tables to the inside of two different filing folders. To play the game, each player opens the folder and places them back-to-back. The top parts are then paper-clipped together to create a barrier.


"You sank my totally useless destroyer made out of Helium, Neon and Argon."

Karyn Tripp

The idea is pretty genius, and Tripp says that her kids who haven’t learned about chemistry yet can still play. Which is good because I still have no idea how the damn thing works. 


The rules are just like the actual game too:

“The kids can then mark where they want to place their ships by circling rows of 2, 3, 4 and 5 elements on the lower table,” Tripp explains. “They play by calling out coordinates. If they miss they put an X on the spot they chose on the upper table. If they get a hit, they circle it.”


If you loved this idea, you can check out even more fun learning games on her website, Teach Beside Me