An element cannot be reduced any more. It is simply a mass of electrons and matter. Do not be confused, there are smaller things than an element, they just come together collectively to form the quantum structure of that element (way over your head). A compound is a mixture of chemically bonded elements, such as baking soda, NaHCO3. It has the elements sodium (Na), hydrogen (H), carbon (C), and oxygen (O). A solution is a liquid with elements or compounds dissolved in it. The liquid will often be water (H2O), and in between the water molecules will be the compound or element. The compound or element must be soluble (dissolvable) in the liquid for it to be considered a solution and not a suspension.