Background Information for the Lessons
Credits:Adapted from Cranial Creations
Understand the impact microscopes had on science investigation.
- Research Leeuwenhoek's life and invention and explain why the
invention was important
- Explain how microscopes have changed
- Explain innovations and technological changes in viewing microscopic
- Explain why we need information about microscopic organisms
- Complete research on Leeuwenhoek, microscopes
Review class notes; research Leeuwenhoek; research information
on microscope use
Rubrics: Content, Effort, Neatness, Following instructions, Creativity
One of the more effective assessment strategies for microscope activities
is constructing portfolios to represent student work. A portfolio
is a systematic gathering of student work to represent learning
and accomplishment. Some things that might be included as portfolio
entries are: drawings and narratives about what is seen through
the microscope, group projects showing microscopic features of living
things, work that demonstrates the identification of features in
and an understanding of the function of living things, student-generated
research related to an aspect of the microscopic world, and work
that demonstrates the use of the microscope in problem solving.
Have available the following materials:
single-edged razor blade
jar of water
Topic: Cells October,
(Pat) Brickley, Battle Mtn. Jr. High, Battle Mountain, NV.
will be able to:
Compare and contrast
the structures of plants and animals.
Demonstrate and understand
the 3-dimensional aspect of cell structure.
Identify the various
parts of plant and animal cells.
The purpose of this activity is to provide students with a hands-on
activity which will enhance their understanding of the 3-D characteristics
of cells while reinforcing their knowledge of plant and animal cells.
Play-doe, food coloring or tempera paints (red, purple, green,
blue), 1 pair disposablegloves, yarn or undercooked spaghetti, pepper,
plastic-bubble packing, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, pencil shavings,
scissors, 1 large knife, glue
- Cytoplasm -- play-doe (plain - approx. 260g or 8oz)*
Endoplasmic reticulum -- yarn or cooked spaghetti
Ribosomes -- pepper
Mitochondria -- play-doe (purple
- approx. 7g)**
Vacuole -- plastic-bubble
Lysosome -- play-doe
(red - approx. 5g)
-- play-doe (green - approx. 10g)
Cell wall --
aluminum foil (approx. 12" X 7")
-- plastic wrap (approx. 12" X 16")
Nucleus -- play-doe
(blue - approx. 20g)
-- plastic wrap (approx. 3"X6")
Subject: Life Science
Topic: Cells October, 1996
Credits:Glenn Westover, McCluer North High School, Florissant, MO
Purpose: The purpose of this activity is to get students to think
about some of the problems that arise when a cell ingests food.
If possible, allow the students to observe Paramecium feeding on
Congo red-stained yeast. Remind them that a cell is a fluid-filled
sack, somewhat like a water balloon. Before starting the exploration
activity, have the students consider the following (kinds of) questions
Materials: 1 plastic shopping bag , 1 pair of scissors ,15 cm of
string ,4 pieces of wrapped candy Time:
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Class Time: 30-45 minutes
This is always a fun activity because everyone wants to be first
to solve the problem AND eat the candy. The students must show the
teacher their solution before they may eat any candy. After a few
failed attempts announce that the first group to discover a valid
solution will own the rights to it and may "share it with" or "sell
it to" their classmates. Eventually a group will arrive at the intended
solution. The only workable solution I know for the problem mirrors
the process of endocytosis as seen in electron micrographs. If you
don't want to fool around with the proprietary issues, usurp the
rights of the discoverers and have them demonstrate their solution
to the class. All may eat the candy if they follow the correct procedure.
As with Paramecium, the food particles are
held in clusters within the cell; enclosed within a pinched-off
portion of the ‘bag-cell's' membrane. The candies do not penetrate
the membrane, but are contained within a portion of it
Have students do a drawing (like the solution above) to describe
the process of endocytosis.
Plant Cells -- What Are the Parts of the Onion Skin Cell?
To observe onion skin cells and to locate the various parts of plant
Methylene blue or iodine solution Dropper bottle
Subject: Life Science
Credit: Adapted from a lab by Shelly Peretz, Thornridge High School,
Dolton, IL, AESPeretz@aol.com
Objective: Observe, compare and describe cell organelles in terms
of their function, structure and operation.
Enter and edit information in a database. Build and sort a student-designed
Find records in a database.
Purpose: Students use their research to plan and create an organized
data base which can be used in subsequent lessons.
Time: Depending on the resources available to students, approximately
Materials: Reference material, computer, data base software
Prior to building the database, students examine a variety of materials
with a microscope to gain an understanding of the cellular structure
of living things.
Students should know how to determine the size, in micrometers
(microm), of plant and animal cells using a small, transparent millimeter
ruler. Introduce the whole class to the data base template; discuss
how it is designed.
Ask students what kinds of information they use in their everyday
life. Explained that a database is a software tool that helps you
work with information. Within each record, there are fields or categories
of information. As the records grow in number, information is easily
retrieved by using the Find command. Information can also be sorted
by selected fields.
A database provides students with a tool to manage information
in their own way. Students are asked to make a list of all the field
headings they think would be necessary to organize their cell research
information. Suggested fields should include the name of the organelle
(the discovery), the scientist credited with the discovery, the
country, the year of discovery, description, size, number, function,
what kinds of cells the organelle is found in, reference materials,
and the name of the student who did the research.
Demonstrated how to redesign the database using the fields and
types of information from the previous discussion. Divided into
groups of 3-4 to do research about cell organelles. Group members
are expected to provide help and encouragement to each other in
order to ensure that all members do the assigned work. Everyone
in the group receives the same grade for this project.
After students have gathered data about each cell organelle they
entered it into their own database. .Students write questions that
could be answered by browsing, searching or sorting their database
in a variety of ways. .
Examples: What country is the most active in cell research? What
reference source provided the most information about cells? Does
the size of the organelle have anything to do with when it was discovered?
What organelles are involved in protein synthesis? cell reproduction?
What organelles are found in animal cells, but not plant cells?
Introduction to DNA Simulation
Subject: Life Science
Understand the process of DNA replication.
Build a DNA molecule using the beads from DNA Lab 1. Students
will then split the molecule and "cause" it to replicate.
Beads from DNA Lab 1, lab instructions
Adequate number of beads and connectors for each lab group.
Subject: Life Science
Meiosis Chart and
Purpose:To arrange chromosomes on a chart that compares mitosis and
meiosis.Materials: scissors, tape or glue
Subject: Life Science Topic:Cells October, 1996 Credit: Linda Culp
Thorndale High School Thorndale, TX 75677
Time:The class time required depends on the abilities
of the students to work outside of class. 1-4 days of class time
should be sufficient for an average class of students to complete
this activity in its entirety in the classroom.
Materials: Markers, crayons, or other paint medium. Poster
board, blank newsprint, butcher paper, or any available paper. News
print can sometimes be obtained from newspaper offices at a very
No preparation is needed by the teacher or the student if the
teacher has previously instructed the students in concept mapping.
However, it is not necessary to develop the concept map to create
the mural and it is important to understand that the students
are not to transfer a concept map onto a larger piece of paper.
The concept map is only used to help the students organize.
HAVE YOU FOUND YOUR LONG LOST TWIN
Subject: Life Science Topic: Cells October, 1996 Credits: Lawrence
Hall of Science
Objective: identify genetic characteristics in humans. use a wheel
to diagram characteristics. compare wheels among individuals class.identify
easily observed physical features that are inherited.time: 15