Spring SAVY 2020: Day 1 – Biochemistry: The Language of Life (5th/6th)
Our focus for this deep dive into biochemistry investigates the body from the macro to the micro level. In our first session on Saturday, we began our study by evaluating the body on a macro level. We learned about the ten different bodily systems and how they are intertwined in their structure and function. The students were each assigned an organ system, and they had to present to the class the structure, the specific organs, types of cells, and their functions. They did a great job disseminating information to their classmates!
The students were then broken into teams and we played a jeopardy style quiz game, where students were tested on their biology, chemistry, and physiology knowledge. Moving from the macro to the microlevel, we then need began our studies of animal cells. We worked on our study of the organelles within the animal cell and the differences between animal and plant cells. The students learned about the different macromolecules that compose the different organelles, specifically: lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids. The students broke into groups and were tasked with creating a poster based on one organelle. They had to present the structure and function to their classmates. The students also had to create large illustrations of their respective organelles.
We ended the day by performing a scavenger hunt where the students had to solve a puzzle within a puzzle. The first layer of the puzzle was to determine which organelle the clue was referring to. The second layer of the puzzle was to determine the DNA sequence by putting together a sequence of DNA bases, labeled with glow sticks. This second layer of the puzzle was simulating Sanger sequencing, which is how the sequencing of our human genome occurs in daily experiments.
We will continue our course next week, diving deeper into how it is these macromolecules are created and which organic elements are responsible for their reactions. We will also incorporate wet-chemistry lab work and get started on some experiments.
See you next week!