In the fall of 1997 I took an Introduction to Chemistry class (Chem 100) at Tacoma Community College, Tacoma, Washington. We were required to memorise at least eight or ten of the more important chemical elements. I asked myself at the time if it was possible to memorise the number of protons and their symbols for the entire periodic table? That question grew to include memorisation of nuclear mass numbers. The answer to both questions is yes, and the process is a simple one as you will see. The first part of the memorisation process is to use a blank Periodic Table. This book provides one that you can duplicate for memory work. You can also construct one with two sheets of college-ruled paper, a straight edge, and a pen or pencil. Building one for yourself is a very helpful aid in memorisation because it requires you to learn the number of chemical elements in each row and the number of rows. Either way, once you have a blank Periodic Table you are ready to begin your memory work. First of all, a chemical element is identified by the number of protons(1). Hydrogen has one, Helium two, Lithium has three, etc.
The number of protons goes in sequential order from 1 to 112, each number representing an individual chemical element. Memorisation requires associating the number of protons with the chemical element and its symbol. Its physical place in the Periodic Table helps in memorisation. This book provides a complete sequential listing of chemical elements by the number of protons (Table 1) to aid you in the memorisation process. The second part of the memorisation process, once the symbols for the chemical elements and the number of protons have been recorded is to memorise the formulae and the series of black numbers shown in the Memorisation Key. These will help you to easily derive the nuclear mass numbers. 1 I have chosen the phrase 'the number of protons' to replace the phrase 'the atomic numbers' for philosophy of science reasons. The word atom in Greek ( tauomicronmuomicronsigma) means indivisible or uncut. All the chemical elements of the Periodic Table can be broken down into smaller parts.