This activity is a hands-on lab that meets the Next Generation Science Standard for fifth grade – 5-PS1-1 Matter and Its Interaction: Develop a model to describe that matter is made of particles too small to be seen. Students learn how the three parts that make up an atom: protons, neutrons and electrons. They research several different elements to find how many protons, neutrons and electrons are in each element and interesting facts about the elements by using provided websites. Then, students build atoms and sketch what they have built. This lab worked great with my fifth grade students and they liked using something as normal as gum drops to demonstrate an atom’s structure. This lab would also work great for older students studying chemistry and atomic structures.