The 5-Second Rule

September 12th, 2010

Do you remember the “5-second rule”? Any food item dropped on the floor is “safe” to eat as long as it doesn’t remain on the floor for longer than five seconds before being picked up.

But is this actually a good rule to live by? A high school senior recently carried out a scientific study to find out whether or not the “5-second rule” was a good measure of food safety. The work was done during a seven-week internship at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (check out the UIUC press release here).

What a great example of making science fun and accessible to everyone!

Biological Animations

October 19th, 2008

I would like to start collecting links for useful biological animations. In teaching at the college-level, I have found it extremely useful to show students animations of various biological processes. Textbooks often come with CD-ROMs or web site access codes that give students access to various animations. However, there are a lot of great animations that are freely available on the web.

For example:

Please send me examples of any useful sites that you know of…and I will continue to post those that I find.

Hello world!

October 19th, 2008

Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

LabPartners at LSUHSC

August 19th, 2005

I received an e-mail the other day from Dan Huan who is the project leader for this project at the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC).He and his group have created a Web site that is a resource for teachers who are interested in covering clinical laboratory science in their classrooms. They have lesson plans, image banks, project ideas and instructions for building low cost digital microscopes for the classroom (approx. $100 to $150 each).

The Medical Center of Louisiana site also has suggestions for how to link up with a local health sciences lab.


August 12th, 2005

Among the many cool learning tools that you will find at WebAnatomy, a site created by Murray Jensen at the University of Minnesota, is a game, where you
can quiz yourself on different aspects of human anatomy.

The Web site also has an Anatomy Image Database that includes: “images are from The Sourcebook of Medical Illustration, P. Cull, ed., The Parthenon Publishing Group, 1989 and are copyright-free as long as they are used for educational purposes.”

Virtual Dissections

October 30th, 2004

Yes. It’s me. I’m still here. My semester has been extremely busy (since I am prepping 4 lectures and 3 labs per week). I can’t believe that it is almost November…and the last day of the semester is December 10th.

Anyway, back to talking about science in the classroom. We dissect fetal pigs in my Biology for Majors lab. I found a couple of virtual fetal pig dissection sites this past summer:

  • The Virtual Fetal Pig Dissection (from Whitman)
  • The Virtual Pig Dissection (from Fort Kent Community High School in Fort Kent, Maine)

    These sites are extremely useful as ancillaries for actual dissections, which is how I use them in my lab. But they could also stand on their own for those who don’t want to use actual fetal pigs in the classroom.

    I would be very interested in any additional links for other virtual dissections of any other organism (cats, earthworms, frogs, crayfish, humans, etc.). Post any relevant links in the comments section. Thanks!!

  • Science News for Kids

    August 20th, 2004

    Science News for Kids logoScience News for Kids is a:

    “Web site devoted to science news for children of ages 9 to 13. [Their] goal is to offer timely items of interest to kids, accompanied by suggestions for hands-on activities, books, articles, Web resources, and other useful materials.”

    This week, the site features articles on topics as diverse as mosquitoes and how monkey’s perceive color. You can search the article archives by topic using the links on the left of the screen (or by using the search window in the top right hand corner of the screen) or by week.

    Check out the PuzzleZone, GameZone and LabZone for weekly science-themed puzzles, games and activities. The SciFiZone offers recommendations for Science Fiction. Check out the ScienceFairZone for “science fair tips, topics, news, student profiles, winning projects, and more.” There is even a TeacherZone with “science materials and resources for teachers and parents.”

    (discovered via Ms. Frizzle’s blog)

    Joey Green Mad Scientist

    August 16th, 2004

    Joey Green Mad Scientist logoAt Joey Green Mad Scientist, you will find a plethora of science experiments that you can do with commonly found household ingredients. For example you can learn how to:

  • Make your own anti-gravity machine (an optical illusion)
  • Turn milk into “plastic”
  • Write a secret message inside an eggshell.
  • and more…

    The Joey Green site also has weird facts about and wacky uses for many “well-known products.”

  • Summer Vacation?

    August 4th, 2004

    Hi folks!

    I’m back. I have spent the last month and a half teaching two condensed summer laboratory courses at the community college where I will be teaching full-time starting this fall. It was fast paced and pretty hectic, but it gave me a good feel for what teaching full-time at GPC will be like. Now I am working to get my syllabi and lectures ready for the Fall semester, which starts on August 23rd.

    I apologize to anyone who has e-mailed me and hasn’t gotten a response yet. I am notoriously bad about replying to anyone’s e-mail when I get swamped at work.

    Although the Fall semester will be busy, I am going to try to post more regularly to the website. I definitely don’t want to stop working on this blog.

    See you soon!

    MadSci Network

    June 21st, 2004

    In their own words…

    “MadSci Network represents a collective cranium of scientists providing answers to your questions. For good measure we provide a variety of oddities and other ends as well.”

    In addition to their library and a search engine that will help you find scientific information on their own site and the world wide web, they have amassed a small collection of science experiments “that require little more than a quick rummaging through the kitchen cabinets.”

    If you have an experiment that you would like to share with others, you can submit your ideas to using their on-line submission form.

    They also provide links to a large number of scientific demonstrations for different age levels. Be aware that some of the links are no longer viable (e.g., Student Alleles Database).