Let's start our tour of the periodic table with hydrogen (H). Why start with hydrogen? Hydrogen is the first element in the periodic table and the most basic and common of all elements in the Universe. Scientists use the letter "H" to represent hydrogen in chemical equations and descriptions.
Over ninety percent of all the atoms in the Universe are hydrogen atoms. By mass, hydrogen makes up about 75% of all matter in the Universe. Hydrogen atoms are also the smallest and lightest of all the atoms with only one electron and one proton in a common single hydrogen atom (called protium).
Although it has been around forever (possibly the first element to ever form), it took a chemist named Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier to name it in 1783. The name hydrogen comes from the Greek word "hydro" which means water (H2O) and the word "genes" which means creator. Lavoisier showed that hydrogen was in all water molecules after discovering that water was created when hydrogen burned in air.
In addition to water, you can find hydrogen closer to home in every organism, blowtorches, and low temperature freezing processes. Farther away from home, you will find it in all stars, including the nuclear reactions that power the Sun.