November 12, 2012
Happy Veteran's Day, and thank you to all of our veterans for the sacrifices they have made for our country.
I wanted to make sure that I included at the beginning of this blog post that I made a mistake with informing some of my students about tomorrow. I told some of my classes that we had a late start tomorrow, November 13. That is incorrect. We have a normal school day tomorrow. The late start is the following week.
Events of the Past Week
During the past week, we finished our egg lab and handed that in. We also concluded our dialysis bag lab investigating how particle size affects the movement of material into and out of the cell. We did a final osmosis diffusion lab on Wednesday that had the students looking at red onion cells under the microscope in fresh water and then in salt water to see the effects of those different types of solutions on the contents of the cell. The dialysis bag lab and the egg lab were collected on Tuesday, and the red onion lab was collected on Wednesday. For homework this week the students were working on finishing the questions in those labs, and one night they were supposed to watch a video of me lecturing about osmosis and diffusion on YouTube. Over this four day weekend they have a review packet on cells that is required homework, and 3 other review sheets (except for my 8th hour class, which had done 2 of them already) which were optional to help them prepare for a test on Wednesday. The test will cover cell organelles, the cell theory (including the scientists who were important in helping to develop it), the structure of the plasma membrane, passive transport (osmosis, diffusion, and facilitated diffusion), and active transport (exocytosis, endocytosis, and the sodium-potassium pump).
Monday - No school. Please thank a veteran.
Tuesday - We will be reviewing for the test on Tuesday. We will first go through the review packet and additional worksheets to see if there are any questions that the kids need help with, and then move on to our review activity. There will be 7 pieces of butcher paper set up around the room, one on each lab table. A different topic from our unit will be at the top of each sheet, and the students will have one minute to write as many things as they can about the topic on the sheet at that lab table. Each table will have a group of four students at it, and after 1 minute, they will rotate to the next table. When they are all done, they will go back around the room to see what their classmates have produced.
Wednesday - We will take the test on the topics outlined previously.
Thursday - We will spend a good amount of time going over the results of the quiz and answering any questions about it. The students will then be given a reading about cancer and some questions to answer that go along with the reading. Homework will be to complete that activity. Our next unit is cell division, and since cancer is simply uncontrolled cell division, it serves as a good hook to help the students see why we need to study and understand cell division.
Friday - We will run a lab investigating why it is that cells need to divide and remain small. We will be investigating the surface area to volume ratio of "cells" of various sizes. The "cells" will be made out of cubes of a jello-like substance called agar. The students will be timing how long it takes for hydrochloric acid to completely diffuse through their different-sized cubes. Homework will be to finish questions in the lab.
Graba Geek of the Week
This week's Geek of the Week goes to Emily Jia and Chloe David, who somehow managed to be co-elected president of the cell in our Cell Organelle Campaign project (otherwise known as #organellewars) even though they had an organelle, the cytoskeleton, which most, if not all, of my students had never heard of before the project. The other group in that class that one, Jessica Lu and Eden Schultz, also deserve special mention because they were trying to get the nucleus elected president, and they were getting smeared by most of the groups in the class. Way to go girls!