Thursday, December 12, 2013

Identifying Microorganisms

In this activity you will use MULTIPLE websites to try to identify some of the microorganisms you are observing in your sample of pond water. 

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 what you think the organisms are.

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: 

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

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Cell Structure Webquest and the Wacky History of Cell Theory

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. You can also use Chapter 7.2 of your Biology Textbook and your notes to help you.

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.

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.

Here is the Ted Ed video we watched in class about "The Wacky History of Cell Theory"
I embedded it below from YouTube, so it may not play at school. 

Here is a more advanced 15 minute video about the structure and function of cells. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

Water Intoxication: Hold your wee for a Wii contest - The sad case of Jennifer Strange

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.

Video on Water Intoxication from YouTube

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.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Your Ecological Footprint

Your ecological footprint...

Click on this link to get to the Ecological Footprint Calculator. Then follow the directions on your sheet.

READ and answer the questions in order on the sheet as you do the online activity. Many of the questions on the sheet include information that will help you with the online activity.

It's VERY important to record your results in question 10 on your sheet when you finish the online activity.

To add your comment, scroll down to "comments" and only log in as ANONYMOUS - so your full name does not show up in your comment. Sign your comment with your first name and last initial and what period you have biology in order to get credit. For example: "Jose P. Period 1"

Friday, September 6, 2013

Spontaneous Generation Reading - Critical Analysis Questions


The article: The Slow Death of Spontaneous Generation (1668-1859) can be found at the following link.

Additional information can be found at the following link.
       In class we read the article and looked for Claims and Evidence
      Highlight or underline “Claims” the author is making or describing. Mark them “C”
      Highlight or underline “Evidence” the author describes to support the claims. Mark them “E.”

       On a separate sheet of paper with your full heading on it – Copy and answer the following:
  1. What is the author’s main claim about spontaneous generation?
  2. What evidence does the author provide to support that claim?
  3. What was Redi’s claim?
  4. What evidence did Redi use to support his claim?    
  5. What was Needham’s claim? (You need to make an inference on this one.)
  6. What evidence did Needham use to support his claim?
  7. What was Spallanzani’s claim?
  8. What evidence did Spallanzani use to support his claim?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Evolutionary Events and Geologic Time (Deep Time)

Once you've calculated the number of years  between each of the evolutionary events and the distance between each event on your timeline, create an accurate timeline including the number of MYA (millions of years ago) each event occurred.

Use the following images and links (and others you find on your own) to find images to use as guides for drawing a representative diagram of each event on your timeline. (I included the first few which are more difficult to find... you can find the others on your own.)

Be careful to organize your timeline so you have enough room to draw images for each event... this is easy at the beginning, but very difficult toward the present day... events happen faster and faster toward the present.

Earth is formed

First single celled organisms

Photosynthetic bacteria

Early multicellular organisms

First fish (jawless)

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mitosis Web Quest

All Cells Come from Other Cells! 

Mitosis is the process of cell division for eukaryotic cells found in multicellular organisms.  All cells come from existing cells and mitosis is how most cells divide. The only eukaryotic cells which do not divide by mitosis are sex cells a.k.a. gametes a.k.a sperm and egg cells.

             The following links are to sites which can help you understand how mitosis works. The sites combine images, text and animation. Look at each site to best understand how the process works.