Cells, The Structural and Functional Units of Life

Carollyn V. Warlick South Shore High School
7500 South Constance Street
Chicago, Illinois 60619


In this exercise you will
A. Have a working knowledge of the vocabulary applicable to plant and animal
cells and the organelles within each cell.
B. Observe the general structure and organelles of cork cells, plant cells and
animal cells using iodine and methylene blue.
C. Apply your knowledge of lab equipment, chemicals and operations of the
D. Discuss the similarities and structurally diverse differences between
eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells.
E. Observe the structure of:

(Draw, label and identify whether plant or animal; prokaryotic or eukaryotic.)

F. Identify major differences between plant and animal cells.
G. Student will be able to list principle functions of each cellular organelle.
H. Students will be able to identify and state the characteristic that is unique
to eukaryotic cells, that is, the compartmentation; a sequestering of
functional metabolic machinery.
I. Students will have an understanding of the structure and functions of the
J. Be able to identify cells by size and shape whether unicellular,
multicellular, plant or animal.


Compound Microscope Cork Stopper
Scalpel or Single-edged razor blade Onions
Cover Slip and Slides Elodea
Flat Toothpicks Cheek cells (taken in class)
Forceps Lugol's Iodine
Paper towels; Kleenex Methylene Blue and Water

Recommended Strategies:

Have the students prepare work stations with
1) paper towels
2) microscope
3) gather materials from stations set up in class room necessary for lab.
4) use alcohol for cleaning lab areas after experiment. Each table will
have an onion wedge, a stem of elodea and a cork stopper.


1. Use of iodine and methylene blue because of damage to clothing and
discoloring of skin.
2. Iodine inhaled can be hazardous to your health.
3. Use of sharp objects: take necessary precautions.

Return to Biology Index