Tag Archives: active learning

The Incredibly Stretchy Condom, Revisited

It has been about 6 years since I wrote about the “Process and Tools of Science” lab in which students learn metric units of measure while they experiment with condoms. I still love this activity and use it every semester, … Continue reading

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Natural Selection in Tortoises: A (Homemade) Video

[Doug Gaffin and Marielle Hoefnagels worked together to develop the materials used in this post.] A while back, I wrote a post on an activity that connects genotype, phenotype, and natural selection. In a nutshell, the activity uses colored chips … Continue reading

Posted in Active learning, Evolution | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Raise Your Hand: How Do You Start the Semester on the Right Foot?

Years ago, I published my best idea for semester prep, a checklist that has proved to be an audience favorite. Over the past 5 years, many readers have asked for my checklist, which I have freely shared. I was knee-deep … Continue reading

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Flashcards, but with a Twist

I have had a fondness for index cards for quite a few years, if my 2012 series on the subject is any indication (for a flashback, visit part 1, part 2, and part 3). Flashcards are of course a tried … Continue reading

Posted in Active learning, Learning at home, Study skills | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

The “Checks”/”Emails” lab: a good start to the semester

We just finished our first week of classes at the University of Oklahoma, and my nonmajors students trooped dutifully into lab on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. To get them talking to each other, one of the icebreaker activities we have done … Continue reading

Posted in Laboratory activities, STEM, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 65 Comments

“Surprisingly Awesome” podcasts

What do broccoli, pigeons, frequent flyer miles, and mattresses have in common? They are all subjects of “Surprisingly Awesome” podcasts. I just listened to the one on broccoli, and I was really impressed. I love resources that help students see … Continue reading

Posted in Engaging students, Evolution, Podcast, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Return of the “Clever Cockroaches”

Longtime followers of my blog may remember that nearly two years ago I wrote a post about the misrepresentation of natural selection and evolution in headlines and news stories. In the study that prompted the post, researchers found that coating … Continue reading

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CourseSource.org: Great teaching resources!

I recently learned about a fantastic site called CourseSource, and I’d like to share a bit about what I found. According to the site, CourseSource is “an open-access journal of peer-reviewed teaching resources for undergraduate biological sciences.” Perhaps you are thinking, … Continue reading

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Drawing to Learn

You might have heard of Writing to Learn, but what about Drawing to Learn? Kim Quillin and Stephen Thomas recently published an article in CBE–Life Science Education that promotes the use of drawings to help students learn biology (especially “model-based … Continue reading

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Watching Other Teachers Teach? Here’s a Great Tool.

This semester, I am committing some time to sitting in on other peoples’ classes at the University of Oklahoma. The instructors I have chosen use a wide variety of teaching styles (from all lecture to all active learning) and come … Continue reading

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