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Jan's Blog

Monday, November 27, 2006

DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid)

As part of the Intermediate II Biology syllabus, one of the optional practicals is basic DNA extraction. This is a great practical which usually has excellent results. When DNA extractions are performed, you can expect three basic results:
1. No DNA
2. DNA appears fluffy which means it has sheared in the extraction process
3. DNA appears as thin threads.
I completed this practical last week with my biology class and they really enjoyed themselves and took a lot out of it. At this level they really enjoy practicals that give them a visual image of what they are learning. Any other experimental ideas would be great.
The above photo shows some of the Kiwi DNA produced but strawberries can also be used!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006


Firstly, apologies for the lack of posts over the past few weeks. Life has become pretty hectic due to the fourth years sitting their prelims. Anyway, after 4 hours of marking last night they are all complete. They have done really well and it makes the job all seem worthwhile!
I have taken photos of the visking tubing experiment from last week and will upload them asap when I get a chance. At present I am completing my interim profile for the GTC. At first when I was told that I would have to complete it the prospect seemed daunting but to be honest it was pretty straightforward. So thats another box ticked and hopefully half way there to be a "real" teacher!
Mt intermediate II biology class have been given me cause for concern this week due to lack of motivation. An ideas on how to enthuse them again would be great.

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Week Ahead

Firstly, thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read and comment on my blog. This week I am going to be looking at Diffusion with my Third Year Standard Grade class. I am going to be doing the experiment on Visking Tubing, which looks at what types of molecules can pass through the cell membrane. Most of the pupils have already done this in first year so I was just wondering if anyone has ideas on how to liven up the lesson instead of listening to 'we have done this already' comments!! Later in the week my Intermediate 2 class are going to be looking at behaviour in woodlice using choice chambers. If anyone knows of any related material that would be great.

I will post the photos of the experiments when the class have carried them out.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Friday 27th October

After attending the Probationer meeting yesterday and consulting a colleague (Tess) I have decided to start my own blog. I feel that blogs are a great way to share information and improve teaching and learning.


My First Post

Hi I am Jan Peaston.

I teach Biology and Science.

Tess is my friend.

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