Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Cell Structure and Function Webquest

Since cells are the basic units of all living things there are many great websites about them. In this webquest you will primarily use two of the best sites to discover what many of the parts of eukaryotic cells look like and what they do.

1. Identify the structure and function of major organelles. 
2. Explain the main differences between cells in plants and cells in animals. 
3. Evaluate two different websites to get the most useful information from each. 

Use the following sites to fill out your "Cell Structure and Function Webquest." Each site has its strengths and weaknesses. 

Cells Alive! Has great animated cells images of both plant and animal cells you can roll over with your mouse to identify organelles. Some of the explanations about the organelles aren't that great, but some are excellent. http://www.cellsalive.com/cells/cell_model.htm

Biology 4 Kids has really fantastic explanations of what the organelles in the cell do. There aren't any cool animations, but the diagrams are very nice. One bad thing about Biology4Kids is that it has advertising on it, but it still has some great bio info.  http://www.biology4kids.com/files/cell_main.html

Identifying Microorganisms

Use the links BELOW to get more information...

Use the following websites to help you identify as many of the organisms you can see in our pond water sample as possible. Draw detailed diagrams of the organisms you see and draw a comparison diagram from one of the websites.

You MUST try to identify the organisms you see in your water sample by using the images and descriptions you find on the websites. Take a look at several of the websites before you decide which one you want to use first.

Pond Water Critters ID page

Pond Life ID kit

Virtual Pond Dip

AAAS Pond Water A Closer Look

Pond 2 – Life in a drop of Pond Water

Once you think you've identified a microorganism you may search for other images or videos of it online to confirm your identification.

For example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fmwN_mD7TvY 
and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ocv67Px49AA&feature=results_main&playnext=1&list=PL3900A98EEBD72DC2

Also try to identify any organelles you can in the microorganisms you observe. You may see nuclei or flagella or other organelles.
Flash Animation of Cells to DNA – Compares Eukaryotic cells to bacteria and zooms from chromosomes to chromatin to dna.

Cell Size and Scale - interactive

Water Intoxication: Hold your wee for a Wii contest

Here is the article we read in class from the New York Times "The Lede" blog. 

Take a look at this short MSNBC news story about Jennifer Strange and her death by hyponatremia.

This link describes the sports medicine concern with hyponatremia that occurs in athletes who sweat a lot during an event, and then drink large amounts of water. Jennifer was not sweating like an athlete, but her body reacted in a similar way.

CBS News also did a story a few days later explaining a bit more about the consequences for the people who worked for the radio station.

It turns out that the DJs were joking about a person who died from water intoxication two years prior to their Wii contest... so they knew it was dangerous. The radio station was sued by Jennifer Strange's family and had to pay them quite a bit. The following article from the LA Times newspaper gives the details.