This week in biology class/lab, we covered Module 5. Since we didn’t meet last week over fall break, the students were expected to do experiments 5.1 and 5.2 at home.
First, we discussed some of the concepts in the chapter…the properties of monosaccharides, biscaccharides, and polysaccharides and the reactions that combine or separate monosaccharides, the composition of proteins, and the role of enzymes in chemical reactions that support life. Then, the students conducted an experiment by mixing fresh pineapple, cooked pineapple, and no pineapple with Jell-O to assess the effects of pineapple enzymes on the gelling processes. (They learned that enzymes in fresh pineapple will prevent gelling, but that these enzymes are fragile and are destroyed by heat.)
The next project was to create edible DNA models using gumdrops, licorice sticks and toothpicks. The students were given a specific nucleotide sequence (with each of the four nucleotides represented by a different color gumdrop) and had to properly match the proper nucleotides together in their double helixes.