Students worked in pairs to figure out filtration, reabsorption and secretion in the nephron. This year we did posters rather than 3D models and I think it worked better. The students really seemed to focus on making sure they understood what they were putting on their poster. (Plus, they did awesome on their Lesson quiz!)
Today students worked in teams to test their visual perception. They tested depth perception, visual acuity, accommodation, astigmatism and several more. At each station, the students read a brief background and then completed the testing procedure.
Today we completed the cow eye dissection and began looking at the structure and function of the eye. It's always a favorite with the students!
After a quick endocrine system overview, students were tasked with diagnosing a mystery endocrine disorder. I am always amazed at how hard students work during this project. They learn so much just through the research process of diagnosing their patient. I took a couple of pictures of the groups working together to figure out their patient's problem. Every group arrived at a diagnosis by the end of the class period. We will use their diagnosis to take a more in-depth look at the hormones produced by the affected glands.
Student groups diagnosed a patient with a communication error of the nervous system. Each group then prepared a presentation to share during "Grand Rounds" to fill the rest of the class in on this problem. They discussed the symptoms and prognosis as well as the current and future treatment options. The presentation included an overview of at least two health care professionals that would impact the patient's quality of life after the diagnosis. Every group had to come up with a creative visual aid to help the class understand the science behind the disorder. Check out the painting one student created!
In today's lab we used an accelerometer stuck on a hammer to measure the exact time of a stimulus (the hammer hitting the table and the hammer hitting your knee). We hooked up our legs with electrodes to measure the electrical current caused during muscle contraction (when you choose to kick - reaction; when your leg reacts - reflex). The average time of a reaction to an auditory stimulus was around 0.4 seconds while the average reflex time was around 0.08 seconds. Pretty neat lab!
Students spent a couple of days looking at reaction time using two different online simulations. Each student pair designed their own experiment to see what effect their variable would have on reaction time. Popular variables this year included an assortment of distractions (pen clicking, poking, yelling, noise from the metal fabrication lab, "spontaneous bursts of clapping"), caffeine, gamers vs. nongamers, being in the cold, etc. Some results were inconclusive, but many found a clear correspondence between their variable and reaction time.
Check out the brain map swim caps the students made while I was out for the day speaking at Fox High School! One side represents the outside structures and the other shows the internal structures. I think they turned out great. (Each map has a key that explains the symbols. Each symbol represents a specific brain function.)