At a Glance


  • STEM
  • Chemistry

Instructional Level

  • College & CEGEP

Tasks in Workflow

Social Plane(s)

  • Individual
  • Whole Class

Type of Tasks

  • Reviewing & assessing peers
  • Creating & designing
  • Revising & improving
  • Writing

Technical Details

Useful Technologies

  • Visual Classrooms

Class size

  • Small (20-49)


  • Single class period (< 90 mins)

Instructional Purpose

  • Application & knowledge building


In this activity, students select a chemical element from the periodic table, research its physical characteristics and then create a comic book character based on the element (i.e., a character that manifests three of the physical properties encountered).

Students upload their work into an online collaborative platform, enabling classmates to analyze and comment on their preliminary work. Students have the opportunity to analyze the comments and suggestions made by their peers, modifying their work as needed.

Once this first round of edits is completed, students create a story based on their comic book character and submit their work to the instructor who also provides feedback. Students address instructor feedback and proceed to submit a final version of their creative piece.

Note that with the help of an online collaborative platform, this entire activity is completed OUT OF CLASS.

Instructional Objectives

The objective of this activity is for students to gain a greater familiarity with the various elements making up the periodic table. Students learn how to discuss science in a precise manner, and how to provide constructive feedback.

Workflow & Materials


Activity Workflow

View on CourseFlow

Contributor's Notes

Yann Brouillette

Yann Brouillette

Dawson College, Montreal


This activity allows students to feel they are creating something original. Despite the creative aspects involved, students are made to talk about science in a precise manner, and are challenging themselves to look for information. Students review and assess each others work, providing them with a broader view of possible applications not only for their element but for those done by other class members.


This activity is something that will typically span the bulk of a semester. Lots of feedback is required, therefore providing students sufficient time to digest information and apply suggestions is key. A great deal of time is required for true learning and interacting to occur.


It can be helpful for the instructor to “seed” the discussion. Once the first heroes are posted, the instructor can post some pertinent comments to get the discussion going. These comments subsequently act as a template for student comments with the aim of generating a deeper discussion.

Applied Strategies


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