Chemistry Learning Game

Science courses can be difficult subject to teach, but instructors can make it a bet easier for college students to learn by using teaching aids.  I stumbled across one for you chemistry teachers to share with your students. You don’t teach chemistry? Do you have a child who is taking chemistry? Then share this site with your future chemist.  No chemistry connection, but you like Mahjong?  Then there is something for you too.

Mahjong Chem

A Stetson University chemistry professor partnered with a game developer to come up a free online learning game called Mahjong Chem.  As of this day, there are eleven games, but it would appear that more may be added:

  1. Oxidation
  2. Polyatomic Ions
  3. Valence Electrons
  4. Acids & Bases #1
  5. Acids & Bases #2
  6. Metric Prefixes
  7. Solubility
  8. Van’t Hoff
  9. Isoelectronic
  10. Elemental Symbols – Intro
  11. Elemental Symbols – Advanced

There is also two versions of classical Mahjong for you non-chemistry gamers.

How to Play Mahjong Chem

If I can do it, your students can do it.  Chemistry was not my favorite science.  (I wonder who got the name changed from chemistry to alchemy.  😉 )

The following video will give you a brief introduction.  Look for my near miss.  I made a mistake near the beginning of the game in terms of properly identifying a symbol.

By the way, did you hear me call Au Silver. I was lucky I couldn’t find a Silver tile. Any way, that was one of the things I didn’t like about chemistry, the symbols. They created them to try to fool you. Silver, as you know is Ag not Au. But why couldn’t it have been Sv or something? And where do you get gold out of Au? Frustrating, isn’t it.

Other Ways to Make Learning Fun

Cartoons may seem childish, but aren’t we all children inside. And don’t college students deserve a laugh or two? So why not incorporate cartoons into your teaching. Cartoon humor can help students learn, and there is an inexpensive book of chemistry cartoons that you may find just the right “formula” for fun learning.

More Learning Games

In my last article, Student Engagement Techniques, I showed you have you can play Jeopardy in your classroom.

By the way, take note of the comment below written by the author of the Mahjong Chemistry game. It is available for smart phones.

Have any favorite online learning games you would like to share? Send them my way, and I will share them with them with everyone. Thanks!

© 2010 Paul A. Hummel, Ed.D.

Updated December 22, 2011




About Dr. Paul A. Hummel, Ed.D.

My name is Paul Hummel, and I often introduce myself to others as a recovering engineer. If you are familiar with the Dilbert cartoons, let me simply say that I lived all of that. I started my college saga at Illinois Institute of Technology. Eventually, I earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Engineering Management. I worked for many years in industry, and during this time I did some college adjunct teaching. During my career I held several managerial positions in industry, the last as Director of Technology of a division of a Fortune 500 corporation. Then, in 1996, with minimal planning or forethought, I found myself working as a manufacturing consultant on behalf of Elgin Community College (ECC). My career in higher education began to take shape. I fell in love with ECC and with the mission of community colleges in general. I worked fulltime and occasionally taught college courses for my institution and two other colleges. After a couple years I set a goal to move over to the “credit side of the college” and eventually become a college administrator. In 2006, having earned my doctorate in education, I achieved that goal. I was hired by Waubonsee Community College as Dean for Technology, Mathematics and Physical Sciences. I have had the great fortune of working at two excellent colleges. The insights I want to share are drawn from the various college positions I have held. At ECC, in addition to my consulting role, I coordinated non-credit professional development training programs for three years and spent four years advising students in the TRiO Student Support Services program. That position helped me understand college education from the perspective of today’s college students. After seven years at Waubonsee, I retired April 30, 2013. I now devote my knowledge and skills to upgrading and expanding the websites I created beginning with Adjunct Assistance. I have three other websites: College Teaching Tips, Keys for College Success and Lighthouse for Learning. A lot of work lies ahead for me in terms of upgrading and expanding each of these websites, but I could not be more excited about fulfilling the vision I have for helping college instructors and their students succeed.


Chemistry Learning Game — 1 Comment

  1. Hi, I helped develop this game, glad you enjoyed it! Just to let you and everyone know, its also available for the iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch now too, free of course!

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