Article: Tiny Mantis Shrimp Pounds Enemies, Prey With Fist-Like Club

Tiny Mantis Shrimp Pounds Enemies, Prey With Fist-Like Club

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(So-Called) Life – Radiolab – Section on Molecular Evidence for Evolution

There is a section of this podcast that explains the molecular evidence of the relationship between birds and dinosaurs. Check it out!

(So-Called) Life – Radiolab.

Cloning and resurrecting the mammoth? Not so fast

Although some scientists have announced they plan on cloning a mammoth, there are reasons to think their plans won\’t get very far.

via Cloning and resurrecting the mammoth? Not so fast.

“Spring” Open House 2012

HHS held its spring open house tonight.  Many parents participated in following their son or daughter’s schedule for one night.

Survey Results: Assignment Calendar

Make your voice heard!

Here are the summary results from my survey on use of the Assignment Calendar.

1.  Majority of you are are fine with the current approach so if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

2.  Reminder: Use the Assignments link  on the right column of to see all assignments instead of clicking through the days on the calendar.

3.  I’ll continue to announce at the beginning of class when assignments are due.  It will help to pay attention and have your planners at the ready.

Survey Results

Blog Post #4: Up Close with the Hydra

It’s time to create your 4th blog post describing the biology of the hydra you observed in lab.

Your post should contain an explanation of at least one of the following themes of biology specifically for the hydra:

1.  Strucuture and Function

2.  Energy Transformation

3.  Regulation

4.  Adaptation

5.  Evolution

6.  Biology and Society

7.  Interaction with the Environment

8.  Reproduction and Inheritance

See section 1.3 of the text if you want a description or examples of the above themes.  You should insert labeled images, videos that demonstrate one of the themes, and citations for any thoughts or resources that you did not create.  Have fun learning about the “horrible” hydra!

Biological Grade Drawings


A time-tested method for recording microscopic observations is that of drawing. Biological draw- ings are made in a particular fashion, which is the only way some observations may be published (e.g., if photographs are not accepted). Biological drawings are also used alongside photographs to enhance inter- pretation of the photographs. Finally, drawing is a useful exercise because it forces you to look carefully at your samples for an extended period of time.

Line Drawings

Biological drawings are line drawings in which lines are only used to outline distinct structures (cells, organelles, organs). Contrast and texture, as observed by the microscopist, are added using stipples — shading is not allowed. In addition, the drawing must be labeled using only horizontal lines that do not cross and just touch the object to be indicated. The process is time-consuming, but excellent results are ob- tained.

Letters may be done freehand but must be neatly printed and uniform in size. Similar letters should be used to note the name of the cell, the viewing conditions (bright-field, dark-field, or phase-contrast), the staining (if any), and the total magnification used in observing the specimen.

Watch this Video (5 min)

Biological Drawings Screen Chomp

Lab Grown Blood Transfused into Donor

Red Blood Cell

Blog Post #3 – Adopt an Organelle!

Adopt an Organelle!

Your mission…is to create a short comic, presentation, or video about the most interesting eukaryotic organelle or cell structure you have learned about to date.  This project should teach the reader about the structure and function of at least one cell part.  You should focus on the biological structure and function (or form and function – if you prefer) of your adopted cell part.

Things to include as minimum standards:

  1. Illustration (sketch or image resource – cite as necessary) of your adopted organelle
  2. Microscope Image (either SEM or TEM) of your organelle (geeky high school photos are ok!)
  3. Labels of important parts and their functions
  4. Short descriptions of structures and their functions
  5. An analogy that relates to your organelle’s function (Nucleus is like the brain because…)
  6. The general function of your organelle (Manufacture, Breakdown, Energy Processing, Support, Movement, Communication)
  7. A creative theme to engage your audience and make the concepts sticky!  Some examples:  A day in the life…Organelle Class of 2012…Organelle Superhero…I’m sure you can come up with better ones!
  8.   Correct content, grammar, and spelling


  1. Post the final product to your blog so that your peers can learn about all the organelles through this creative means of communication.
  2.   Leave comments on at least 3 projects that you think are the most creative, most technical, most factual, most likely to succeed in life…wait…comments should be supportive and discuss the best aspects of the project based upon the above minimum standards.

Blog Post #2 – Choose Your Own Adventure

Today, you are continuing to explore the structures of a cell and their functions.  You can pick one of the following options to continue on in your quest for structure / function nirvana.

1.  Continue Using the APP: Cells and Cell Structures: Complete all parts and Blog What you Now Understand

2.  Watch Video: Standard Deviants Chapter 5 “The Cell” and Blog your Notes

3.  Actively Read (highlighting) and Color the Plate Titled “Animal Cell Coloring Plate” and Attach Final Product to your Blog