Tag Archives: natural selection

Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria: A Simple, Realistic Lab Activity

Every now and then I write a blog post about lab activities that worked in my nonmajors biology class. For example, I have written about reptilobirds (an activity combining meiosis and inheritance), staining banana cells to illustrate digestion in plants, … Continue reading

Posted in Evolution, Laboratory activities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 94 Comments

Recognizing purposeful evolution: A treasure trove of prompts

  I was recently cleaning out my teaching lab and found a stash of index cards with test items from the early 1950s. As I was trying to decide whether to keep them or toss them in the recycling bin, … Continue reading

Posted in Assessment, Evolution, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , | 10 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

Posted in Active learning, Evolution, Videos | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Growing a Thicker Skin: A Borrowed Lab Activity

Skimming through the August 2015 issue of The American Biology Teacher, I found a lab activity that I am eager to try. It’s by Troy R. Nash, Suann Yang, and John C. Inman of Presbyterian College, and it’s called “Growing a Thicker … Continue reading

Posted in Laboratory activities, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Video recommendation: HHMI’s Biology of Skin Color

Over a year ago I mentioned the HHMI Biointeractive site and its excellent videos. I just viewed another one on the same site. This one is called The Biology of Skin Color, and it is another winner. It is narrated by … Continue reading

Posted in Evolution | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Teaching the Biomes: A Different Approach

I feel like I can do a pretty good job lecturing on most topics at a level that will hold the attention of nonmajors, but two exceptions are cell organelles and biomes. Don’t get me wrong — I love teaching … Continue reading

Posted in Active learning, Ecology, Engaging students, Evolution, Experimental design, Teaching | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Two Outstanding Videos: One for Natural Selection and One for the Genome

My recent post about natural selection misconceptions prompted a comment from a colleague who endorsed the educational value of Howard Hughes Medical Institute videos and learning materials. I spent some time on HHMI’s BioInteractive site to see what I could … Continue reading

Posted in Engaging students, Evolution, Learning at home, Teaching, Videos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

A Small Victory, but We Have a Ways to Go

About a year ago, I wrote a blog post about the pervasive misrepresentation of natural selection, not only in the mass media but also by professionals who should know better. My main problem is with the depiction of natural selection … Continue reading

Posted in Evolution, Teaching | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

“Clever Cockroaches”? I Don’t Think So!

One of my goals as an instructor and as a textbook author is to help students understand how natural selection works. It’s such an elegant concept that it should be simple to teach and apply. But students come in with … Continue reading

Posted in Evolution, Science news, Teaching | Tagged , , , , | 7 Comments