Saturday, October 27, 2012

3c: Engaging Students in Learning with a demonstration large microscope slide

     Often in biology you need to show the students something and it's small and very difficult for them to see from their seats. One such situation is when you need to show them how to make a wet mount slide or how to use a dropper and a paper towel to change the water under the coverslip. 
     If you know me, you'll know that I love hardware stores. I love the way you yourself can use a little  elbow grease and fix something yourself. I even love just wandering the store for new ideas. Well, this is one of those ideas. I was at the hardware store and I had an ah-ha moment. I had the clerk cut me two pieces of approximately 9 inches by 20 inches (to make a large slide) and the other approximately 6 inches x 6 inches (to make the coverslip). 
plexi-glass slide, coverslip and dropper
Here's a baster for sale at Kohl's

     I used a piece of sandpaper to smooth down the edges and a permanent marker to darken the edge around the coverslip so my students could see exactly where it is at. I then printed out a very large letter "e" and bought a turkey baster at the dollar store (to represent the dropper the students will be using). 

I darkened the edge of the coverslip with permanent marker to make it more visible.

     My students actually laugh out loud every year when I show them my model and I know it helps them understand what I am trying to explain. I think that might be one of the most difficult parts of do I get something that is clear to me inside my head....out to them so it's clear to them inside their head? I hope that this idea helps you and if it inspires you, please comment and share with us your idea.

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