High School Biology-Chemisty SMILE Meeting
21 October 2003
Notes Prepared by Porter Johnson
Barbara Lorde [Attucks School]       Make Your Own Lungs
  started with a prelude of how she creates interest in her classroom using a phenomenological approach, e.g. by holding up an envelope and asking questions about it (or its contents). [Many of us were surprised to hear that the secret of self-seal envelopes is that the surface of the flap is coated with thousands of tiny bubbles.  When the flap is pushed against the envelope, the bubbles burst, releasing the glue and sealing the envelope.]  Barbara next asked us about breathing problems we might have.  We then made our own working model of lungs, using a clear plastic drinking cup for the thorax, a plastic straw for the trachea (inserted through a hole in the bottom of the cup), small balloons for lungs (attached to the trachea on the inside of the cup), and a piece of rubber (cut from larger balloon) stretched across the top of the cup for the diaphragm. The lungs could be made to expand and contract in several ways:

Cellophane tape was used to seal the various openings. Several of us made models with two lungs (and two tracheæ).  For more information see A Model of Your Lungs: http://www.sciencenetlinks.com/lessons.cfm?DocID=245.

A great way for students to learn.  Thanks, Barbara!

Wanda Pitts [Douglas Elementary School       Inertia Challenges
Wanda let us through the following exercises to illustrate the concept of inertia: 

Ken Schug added another example involving inertia, using a roll of toilet paper.  With a slow pull the paper rolls, whereas with a fast pull one piece detaches. Place an object on the end of the toilet paper on a flat surface, and then pull slowly  (object travels with paper) or rapidly (paper detaches). Note that, as weight of object is increased, the paper eventually will detach, with even a slow pull.

We all had fun and learned a lot! Thanks, Wanda.

Chris Etapa [Gunsaulas Academy]       Nature Walk, Part II
We finished the class with a follow-up to the previous lesson [bc100703.html], where we brought in a wide variety of autumn leaves. Chris reviewed some of the physical features of leaves used to identify them. Then she showed us some (fantastic) collages made by students in her science club using leaves they had brought to class,  and she gave us 15 minutes to make a collage with our leaves. The collages used leaves of various shapes and sizes to make exceptionally creative images of animals:  fish, an elephant, birds, etc.  We were expected to identify as many tree species as possible,  and to describe the type of leaves shown  in our drawing. Glue was used to attach the flattened leaves to a heavy paper backing.

Great job as usual, Chris!

Notes taken by Ken Schug.

Schedule of Future Presentations:
Date Presenters
04 November Lilla Green, Christine Scott
18 November Ed Scanlon
02 December Parham/Malvin/Giles, Barbara Pawela
09 December Brenda Daniel