Tag Archives: biology

Yoga Xrays and more

As a recent convert to Ashtanga yoga this video has me totally enthralled at how our bodies bend, twist and what various yoga poses look like from a skeletal point of view.

From another perspective, this Youtube channel is brilliant resource for teaching from looking at the various bones, locations of organs etc in Keystage 1 science to looking at types of joints and movement in Keystage 3 to much more advanced and in-depth physiological study. There are also immunology, cellular biochemistry and microbiology videos too. The videos are amazing, prepare to lose a few hours…..

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Caddisfly Jewellery – STEAM in Nature!

We aren’t the only animals with a penchant for self-decoration. Caddisfly larvae protect themselves by constructing elaborate armors from gravel, sand, twigs, and other debris, which they “glue” together using excreted silk. The tiny moth-like insects scavenge whatever material is suitable from their environments, including anything you choose to give them. French artist Hubert Duprat was among the first to take advantage of the insects’ predilections by supplying them with gold flakes, opal, turquoise, rubies, and pearls. The resulting cases are intricate works of art that can be strung up like beads to create one-of-a-kind jewelry. via Caddisfly Jewelry | Ecouterre.

Snap Science- free primary teaching resources

The Snap Science programme has been designed to cover the new primary science curriculum with enquiry, exploration, investigation and true progression at it’s core. Every lesson is already differentiated and the lessons aim to make challenging concepts meaningful for students.  At £100 a Year Group it’s affordable enough but to check out the kind of resources and ideas that are presented Collins Connect have made the Year 3 – Plants module available here Collins Connect – free primary teaching resources. Being a plant biologist, I like the way they are approaching the topic in a questions based way. What is this for? Are all roots the same? Why are petals different colours? This is in stark contrast to the labelling parts of a plant on a worksheet which I have seen way too often in the primary clas

sroom. There is also a lot of scope to develop child-led investigations out of the lessons and easy to put in different types of enquiry in experiments such as pattern seeking and classification.  See what you think!

Freddie the Fart Machine and your Portable Chemistry lab…

Stefan Gates is famous for Gastronaut Live: food, science and adventure shows that are staged at major events, food and science festivals, theaters and schools across the UK.  I saw him most recent show at The Big Bang Fair UK 2015 and was hugely entertained throughout. Some of the children who I brought along were so inspired that they introduced some of his fun demos into a mini lecture for school!

Timstar have been given access to a range of exhilarating science demo worksheets, videos and much more from Stephan. There are lots of ideas to show you how to inspire people with fascinating food science. Over the next few months  videos accompanied by demo worksheets, non-video demo worksheets and features will be published. Keep a look out for updated content right on this page.

Problem Prosecco?

uvaGlera is a white variety of grape of Italian origin. Glera is a grape known to many people but perhaps only by it’s former name; Prosecco. Yes, this grape is responsible for that lovely refreshing sparkling wine Prosecco synonymous with warm summer evenings and outdoor dining with friends. The name Prosecco is believed to be derived from the village Prosecco near Trieste, where the grape originated. It has been proposed that it was cultivated already in Roman times, possibly as the vinum pucinum praised by Pliny the Elder, although that is quite a loose link really. But kind of cool.

ruggeri-prosecco-uvaWhat is not so cool is the Glera grapes have suffered a number of poor seasons and many of the vineyards in the Trieste in Italy are reporting significant losses in crop yield this year. Some experts are warning of a very real possibility of a global shortage of Prosecco from this summer.  Roberto Cremonese, Export Manager of Bisol reports that almost 50% of the crop was lost this year due to environmental factors.

“A lot of the vines in the DOC area are newly planted and they ended up soaked – the grapes were rotten and yields were down by half in some cases.”

As a result of this news, my Facebook feed is full of ladies declaring they have stocked up their Prosecco supply so let’s hope this is just scaremongering by a very clever marketing guru somewhere…

Women in STEM

BeFunky CollageJust 13% of science, tech, maths and engineering workers are female. There are several initiatives around the the globe which aims to readdress this balance. From encouraging little girls to play with Lego to mentoring and inspiring female students in University. Many claim a lack of positive female role models is to blame for this gender imbalance. Certainly, I remember only one woman professor in the department I did my degree research in.

I passionately strive to encourage young girls to consider STEM careers and am a member of many organisations such as ScienceGrrl and Project Yamina which are working hard to keep girls interested in scientific research and careers.

Here, Rachel Swaby, author of a book highlighting women’s contributions to science, chooses her favourite female scientists, from the greatest dinosaur hunter to the inventor of Kevlar.