Posts Tagged ‘worms’

Pond Scum Science!

February 12th, 2008

Recommended Website:
Ron’s Pond Scum

Age Range: All (Young children and non-readers will need parental assistance.)

ClickSchooling member Cassandra Brungardt recommended this website that provides a virtual exploration of the critters living in pond scum.

When you get to the site, simply click on the links in the text to see remarkable photographs and learn about protozoan, paramecium, actinopods, vorticella, anchor worms, fly larvae, amoeba, water mites, algae, and other single-celled and multi-celled oddities.

All of this comes to you courtesy of a retired Computer Systems Analyst named Ron DeAngelis who lives with his wife in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. I contacted Ron and learned that several years ago, he set up an outdoor fish pond and became interested in micro pond life. He bought a good microscope and when he discovered he could take excellent pictures with a digital camera, “Ron’s Pond Scum” was born!

Ron told me that he gets emails from students all over the world, as well as from frustrated parents who confide that without Ron’s website, their child would never have finished his or her science project.

Ron has two grown children. One daughter has a Master’s in Bio-Chemistry and another daughter is graduating in May with a BS in Biology. He wrote, “I guess some of the pond scum in my genes found its way to theirs.” :)

Ron’s Pond Scum is a terrific way to explore the life teaming in pond water without getting wet. It’s a great supplement to any science curriculum.

History of Dentistry

October 14th, 2004

Recommended Website:
American Dental Association: History of Dentistry

This site by the American Dental Association provides a unique timeline of dental history. When you get to the site you will see a timeline that includes:

  • Ancient Origins — Trace the origins of dental health from 5000 BC when an entry in a Sumerican text describes “tooth worms” as the cause of tooth decay.
  • Middle Ages-Renaissance — Explore the timeline entries from 500 to 1575 AD. Find out what monks and barbers had in common.
  • 18th Century — Paul Revere was a dentist?! Yes! And in 1776 he was involved in the first known case of dental forensics!
  • 19th Century — Read all about the remarkable advances in dental knowledge and some strange dental equipment that was used from 1801 to 1924.
  • 20th Century — this section recounts the technological advances in dentistry and dental procedures from 1903 to 1997.

When you are through looking at the timeline, use the menu on the left side of your sceen to see some incredible animations for children and adults that explain dental procedures and good oral hygiene. Play some games to promote knowledge of dental health.

Click on “Educators and Students” to find lessons on dental health for grades K-12 — as well as information on careers in the dental health profession.

Microbes in Holiday Foods

December 3rd, 2002

The holidays are upon us. I thought it would be fun to incorporate curriculum into typical holiday activities…

Recommended Website:
The Microbe Zoo: Snack Bar

Cooking is chemistry. While you prepare holiday breads, cookies, and treats discuss the chemical reactions that take place during the baking process. What is yeast and why does it make things “grow”? There are microbes in food that help preserve them and retard the growth of unwanted microbes. At this website you will find out about the microscopic “helpers” in foods like bread, chocolate, yogurt, wine and beer.

When you get to the site you will see a picture of a snack bar with a menu of foods below it. Click on any of the food names to learn a little about the microbes in it, and click on the links in the descriptions to see microscopic images of yeast and lactobacillus.

When you are through examining what’s in some familiar foodstuffs, go back to the main menu at the top of the screen to explore the Microbial Zoo website in full. You’ll discover:

  • Dirtland — Find out about the microbes in dirt that help improve soil, cause plant disease, fertilize plants and keep harmful insects away.
  • Animal Pavilion — Microbes live quite comfortably on animals and humans. Through activities and experiments discover the ones on teeth, in stomachs, and on skin. Find out how microbes help termites digest wood. Don’t miss “Poo Corner” where you will discover the function of microbes in dung.
  • Adventures in Space — Discover microbes in the biosphere and learn about experiments with microbes in space.
  • Water World — Microbes live in water too. Explore ponds and deep sea vents to see microscopic images of algae and tube worms.

See what holiday baking can lead to?