An archive of the favorite classroom activities submitted by high school biology and life sciences teachers participating in the Access Excellence program.
- An Adaptation of Microbe Hunters
- Students reenact scenes from the history of science.
- Andros Adventure
- Field studies on Andros Island, Bahamas
- Animal Behavior
- Animal observations in a zoo setting
- The Artemia Hatchery
- Artemia hatchery construction using a liter bottle
- Beaker Babies
- Introduction to the basic mechanisms by which characteristics
are passed from one generation to another
- Benthic Macroinvertebrates
- An open ended field exercise in which students sample the benthic macroinvertebrate
populations of a given stream and determine community structure through the use of two indices
- Bioethics: Debates in Human Genetics
- Effective use of debates, mock trials and parody in the classroom
- Biotechnology and The Chocolate Milk Cow
- Students "design" a cow genetically-engineered to produce chocolate-flavored milk
- Bog Science
- Building awareness of the unique chemical, hydrologic, and vegetative aspects of bogs
- Cell Discoveries
- Developing a ClarisWorks dataabase to study relationships of organelles
- Cells on Ceiling
- Transform your classroom into a giant cell!
- Cell, Socks, and Sex
- This is a fun, easy way to teach the process of mitosis and meiosis.
- Chips Off the Old Block?
- By using analogies between common items or occurrences and
science concepts we can be more successful at helping our students understand "the
- Create a Creature
- Fantasy creatures are created and explained
- Decision Making and
- Decision Making in a High-Tech World: Is Genetic Engineering a Threat to Future Generations?
- Determining the Amount of Transpiration from a Schoolyard Tree
- Students calculate the amount of water transpired by a single leaf and estimate that transpired by an entire rainforest.
- Disease Role Play
- Students will develop an action plan in collaborative groups addressing a new
- DNA Isolation from Onion
- This lab enables students to work with DNA concretely by easily isolating chromosomal DNA using the same basic tools and methods that scientists use. The lab is a good introduction to using pipets and to using the metric system. If the chemistry of the solutions is taught it is also a great practical application.
- This is a newly designed thematic unit which will explore the medicinal values of
local plants. It is designed as a generic unit that will allow for regional differences.
- Eye to Eye With Garden Snails
- Students explore the external characteristics and behavior of snails
- Field Ecology Notebook
- Field Ecology is designed to teach students general scientific methods, procedures,
and thinking skills, as well as specific methods and procedures used to study plants
and animals in their natural setting.
- Games and Activities to Teach Molecular Genetics
- Demonstrates the complex functions cells carry out in the activities
necessary for life to exist
- A genetic counseling service created and designed by a high school biology class
- Genetic Scenarios and Toothpickase
- Soap opera scenarios to study genetic defects...toothpicks to explain enzymes!
- Geneticist for a Day
- "Dry lab" enactments of partial pedigree and genetic analysis studies
- Genetics the Easy Way
- Problems with Punnett Squares? Product-Rules? Check this out!
- Habitat Hunt
- This activity helps students learn the components of ecosystems
with a discovery or inquiry activity.
- Hands On Biodiversity: Networking Students and Their Biomes
- Using telecommunication and mail to monitor water quality of the five biomes of the United States
- Homologous Shoes?
- Tennis Shoes....Whew!
- Immunology Unit
- This unit describes a group of lessons which use an inquiry approach to teach the immune response. Cooperative learning, computer simulations, laboratory activities, and writing are included.
- An Inquiry Laboratory Activity for Biology
- Studies on enzymes that break down hydrogen peroxide
- Inquiry-based Investigations into Pond Water Microorganisms
- Examining the life forms in ponds
- Introduction to Adaptation
- Tackling concepts of common ancestry, homology, analogy, adaptive radiation,
and evolution using lab specimens
- Investigating DNA
- A variety of activities designed to facilitate the understanding of DNA
- Isolation of Antibiotic-Producing Organisms from Soil
- Isolating Streptomyces from soil samples
- Laboratory Notebook for Science
- The art and science of keeping a scientific notebook.
- Lab Safety
- An alternative to the standard lecture on lab safety which introduces group work and creativity in the opening days of school.
- Leaf Stomata as Bioindicators of Environmental Change
- Leaf stomatal densities can be determined
by a simple laboratory technique and yet have wide application in understanding
- Legal Aspects of Tissue Transplantation
- Using the role play format to discuss the bioethical issues involved with fetal tissue
- Mapping the Homunculus
- Students map the region of the cortex which receives tactile input from the body
- Membrane Permeability with Beets
- Studies on diffusion using beets and alcohols
- Medicine, Technology and Society
- Understanding alternative approaches to healing
- Monomer and Polymer Chemistry
- Experiments with starch and sugar
- Nucleic Acids and Protein Synthesis
- A variet of strategies using all the senses make learning both genetic code and how it works relevant and fun.
- Oil Spill in a Test Tube
- Experiments with oil-eating Acinetobacter calcoaceticus RAG-1 bacteria to model oil spill cleanups
- Preparation and Staining of Mammal Cells to View Sister Chromatids
- The objective of this project is to culture and stain mammal cells allowing observation of sister chromatids.
- Rain Forest Products
- Student appreciation of products from the rainforest
- Restriction Enzymes
- By using different restriction
enzymes, you can cut the DNA at many different places.
- Scavenger Hunt: A Group Collection
- A "curator" and "collector" approach to classification
- Seahawk Educational & Environmental Discovery Program
- High school students becomes mentors to younger children to teach an environmental discovery program
- Student Investigation on the Immune System and Hemeagglutination
- Laboratory protocol for hemeagglutination experiments
- Symbiosis and Co-evolution
- Integrating technology into the study of biology
- Teaching Biology Through Problem-based Activities
- Using Wisconsin Fast Plants in the classroom
- The Cost of Telling the Truth
- In their study of Leopold's Land Ethic and a modern application, students will use what they have learned to consider the dilemmas in this case study
- The Identification of Bacteria
- Experiments to "Name that Bacteria"
- The Monarch Watch
- Tagging Monarch butterflies and observing their migratory path
- The Spread of HIV Through a Population
- Test tubes and phenopthalein are used to demonstrate the epidemiology of AIDS
- Transcription Translation Tango
- Students choreograph and perform a dance to simulate transcription/translation of the DNA molecule to make a protein
- Using Ion Exchange Chromatography to Separate Proteins
- Experimental procedure for protein chromoatography
- A Walk Through the Gut
- A simulation to help students understand what happens to food as it passes through the digestive system
- What's in a Name?
- A natural history museum provides the setting for a study of common and scientific names and the value of the binomial system of nomenclature.
- What is life?
- Biology is the study of life. But how do you know if something is living or not?