Collective names of groups of like elements

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There are areas on the periodic table where elements have similar properties. For example, all of the first column elements (alkali metals) are light, very soft, react with water rapidly, make hydroxides that are strong bases, and react with the halogens to make colorless ionic compounds.

The second column elements (alkaline earth metals) are a little heavier, a little harder, react with water a little less rapidly, made hydroxides that are strong bases, and react with the halogens to make colorless ionic compounds.

The other categories are: transition metals, pnictogens, chalcogens, halogens, and noble gases. There are also inner transition metals that are divided into lanthanides and actinides.