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Illustrated Guide to Home Biology Experiments

Book Description

Experience the magic of biology in your own home lab. This hands-on introduction includes more than 30 educational (and fun) experiments that help you explore this fascinating field on your own. Perfect for middle- and high-school students and DIY enthusiasts, this full-color guide teaches you the basics of biology lab work and shows you how to set up a safe lab at home. The Illustrated Guide to Home Biology Experiments is also written with the needs of homeschoolers firmly in mind, as well as adults who are eager to explore the science of nature as a life-long hobby.

Table of Contents

  1. Dedication
  2. Preface
    1. Who this Book is For
    2. How this Book is Organized
    3. Acknowledgments
    4. How to Contact Us
    5. Thank You
    6. Author Bios
  3. 1. Introduction
    1. Using this Book with Your Curriculum
    2. Planning and Scheduling
    3. Work Areas
    4. Maintaining a Laboratory Notebook
      1. Laboratory Notebook Guidelines
      2. Laboratory Notebook Format
  4. 2. Equipping a Home Biology Laboratory
    1. Microscopes and Accessories
      1. Microscope Types
        1. Compound Microscope
        2. Head Style
        3. Illumination Type and Power Source
        4. Illumination Methods
        5. Nosepiece and Objective Lenses
        6. Eyepieces (Oculars)
        7. Focuser
        8. Mechanical Stage
        9. Substage Condenser, Diaphragm, and Filter Holder
      2. The Final Decision
      3. Stereo Microscope
      4. Portable Microscopes and Magnifiers
    2. Microscope Accessories
      1. Cleaning Equipment
      2. Immersion Oil
      3. Photomicrography Equipment
      4. Slide Preparation Equipment and Supplies
        1. Slides
        2. Coverslips
        3. Butane Lighter or Alcohol Lamp
        4. Forceps and Slide Tongs
        5. Mountants
        6. Biological Stains
        7. Coplin Staining Jar
        8. Slide Storage
    3. Culturing Equipment and Supplies
      1. Autoclave
      2. Incubator
      3. Culturing Containers
        1. Petri Dishes
        2. Culture Tubes
        3. Culture Flasks
      4. Culturing Media
      5. Culturing Accessories
    4. Histology Equipment and Supplies
      1. Microtome
      2. Dehydration Baths
      3. Embedding Blocks
    5. General Laboratory Equipment
    6. Major Equipment
      1. Spectrophotometer
      2. Cellphone Spectrophotometer
      3. Ultracentrifuge
      4. DNA Processing Equipment and Supplies
    7. Prepared Slides
    8. Specimens
  5. 3. Laboratory Safety
    1. Prepare Properly
    2. Dress Properly
    3. Avoid Laboratory Hazards
    4. Don’t Do Stupid Things
  6. 4. Using a Microscope
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure I-1-1: A Microscope Tour
      1. Controlling and Focusing the Light
      2. Focusing the Microscope
      3. Determining Field of View and Measuring Specimens
      4. Positioning and Observing a Slide
    4. Build a Darkfield Apparatus from Pocket Change
    5. Review Questions
  7. 5. Mounting Specimens
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure I-2-1: Making Wet Mounts
      1. Mounting a Hair Specimen
      2. Comparing Temporary Mounting Fluids
    4. Procedure I-2-2: Making Smear Mounts
    5. Procedure I-2-3: Making Hanging Drop Mounts
    6. Procedure I-2-4: Making Sectional Mounts
    7. Review Questions
  8. 6. Staining
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure I-3-1: Simple Staining
    4. Procedure I-3-2: Gram Staining
    5. Review Questions
  9. 7. Building and Observing Microcosms
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure II-1-1: Gathering Materials
      1. Field Trip!
    4. Procedure II-1-2: Building Aquarium Microcosms
    5. Procedure II-1-3: Building Winogradsky Column Microcosms
    6. Procedure II-1-4: Observing Winogradsky Column Microcosms
    7. Review Questions
  10. 8. Observing Succession in Aquarium Microcosms
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure II-2-1: Observe Succession in Microcosms
    4. Review Questions
  11. 9. Observing the Effects of Pollution in Microcosms
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure II-3-1: Build Polluted Microcosms
    4. Procedure II-3-2: Observe Succession in Polluted Microcosms
    5. Review Questions
  12. 10. Acids, Bases, and Buffers
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure III-1-1: Percentage and Molar Concentrations
      1. Making Up 1 M Solutions
    4. Procedure III-1-2: Effect of Concentration on pH
      1. Populating the Reaction Plate
      2. Determining the pH of the Solutions
    5. Procedure III-1-3: pH of Household Materials
    6. Procedure III-1-4: Buffers
      1. Preparing a 0.1 M Acetate Buffer Solution
      2. Testing the Buffer Solution
    7. Review Questions
  13. 11. Carbohydrates and Lipids
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
      1. Carbohydrates (Saccharides)
      2. Lipids
    3. Procedure III-2-1: Investigating Sugars
    4. Procedure III-2-2: Investigating Starches
      1. Testing Specimens for the Presence of Starch
      2. Testing for Starch at the Cellular Level
    5. Procedure III-2-3: Investigating Lipids
      1. Solubility of Lipids
      2. The Grease-Spot Test for Lipids
      3. The Effect of Sudan III Stain on Lipids
      4. Observing Lipids at the Cellular Level
    6. Review Questions
  14. 12. Proteins, Enzymes, and Vitamins
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
      1. Proteins
      2. Enzymes
      3. Vitamins
    3. Procedure III-3-1: Investigating Proteins
      1. Preparing Specimens
      2. Detecting Proteins with the Biuret Test
      3. Testing for the Presence of Cystine
      4. Denaturing Proteins with Alcohol, Acids, Bases, and Heavy-Metal Ions
    4. Procedure III-3-2: Investigating Enzyme Catalysis
      1. Prepare a Standard Peroxidase Solution
      2. Prepare Modified Peroxidase Solutions
      3. Prepare a Neutral Solution of Hydrogen Peroxide
      4. Test the Activity of Peroxidase Solutions
    5. Procedure III-3-3: Assaying Vitamin C Concentration in Urine
      1. Make Up a Standardized Vitamin C Solution
      2. Assay Vitamin C Concentrations
    6. Review Questions
  15. 13. Coacervates
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure III-4-1: Prepare and Observe a Coacervate
    4. Review Questions
  16. 14. Extracting, Isolating, and Visualizing DNA
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure III-5-1: Extracting and Visualizing DNA
    4. Review Questions
  17. 15. Build a Gel Electrophoresis Apparatus
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure III-6-1: Making the Gel Casting Container and Comb
    4. Procedure III-6-2: Assemble the Apparatus
  18. 16. Simulated DNA Separation by Gel Electrophoresis
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure III-7-1: Prepare Running Buffer
    4. Procedure III-7-2: Prepare and Cast the Gel
    5. Procedure III-7-3: Load and Run the Dye Specimens
    6. Review Questions
  19. 17. Chlorophyll and Photosynthesis
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure IV-1-1: Observing Carbon Dioxide Uptake
    4. Procedure IV-1-2: Determining the Effect of Light Intensity on Photosynthesis
    5. Procedure IV-1-3: Chromatography of Plant Pigments and Locating Cellular Energy Reserves
    6. Review Questions
  20. 18. Investigating Osmosis
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure IV-2-1: Observing Osmosis in Chicken Eggs
    4. Review Questions
  21. 19. Investigating Cell Division
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure IV-3-1: Observing Mitosis
    4. Review Questions
  22. 20. Sampling Plant Populations in a Community
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure V-1-1: Choosing and Preparing the Survey Area
    4. Procedure V-1-2: Surveying the Plant Community
    5. Procedure V-1-3: Performing a Population Count
    6. Review Questions
  23. 21. Observing the Effect of Rhizobia on Plant Growth
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure V-2-1: Grow Lima Beans With and Without Rhizobia
      1. Endnote
    4. Review Questions
  24. 22. Air Pollution Testing
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure V-3-1: Building Particle Traps
    4. Procedure V-3-2: Positioning and Exposing the Particle Traps
    5. Procedure V-3-3: Counting and Identifying Particles
    6. Review Questions
  25. 23. Soil and Water Pollution Testing
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure V-4-1: Obtaining Soil and Water Specimens
    4. Procedure V-4-2: Testing the Reagents
    5. Procedure V-4-3: Making Boron Concentration Comparison Standards
    6. Procedure V-4-4: Testing Specimens for Boron
    7. Review Questions
  26. 24. Exploring Mendelian Genetics
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VI-1-1: Testing Subjects for the Ability to Taste PTC
    4. Procedure VI-1-2: Charting Inheritance of PTC-Tasting Ability
    5. Review Questions
  27. 25. Observing Specialized Eukaryotic Cells
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VII-1-1: Observing Onion Epidermal and Elodea Leaf Cells
    4. Procedure VII-1-2: Comparing and Contrasting Eukaryotic Cells
    5. Review Questions
  28. 26. Preparing Culturing Media
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VII-2-1: Preparing Normal Saline and Nutrient Media
    4. Review Questions
  29. 27. Culturing Bacteria
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VII-3-1: Staining and Observing the Original Culture
    4. Procedure VII-3-2: Inoculating Plates and Tubes
    5. Procedure VII-3-3: Producing Pure Cultures
    6. Review Questions
  30. 28. Investigating Bacterial Antibiotic Sensitivity
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VII-4-1: Testing Antibiotic Sensitivity
    4. Procedure VII-4-2: Culturing an Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Strain
    5. Procedure VII-4-3: Retesting Sensitivity of the Resistant Strain
    6. Review Questions
  31. 29. Investigating Protista
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure VIII-1-1: Observing Spirogyrae
    4. Procedure VIII-1-2: Observing Euglenae
    5. Procedure VIII-1-3: Observing Amoebae
    6. Procedure VIII-1-4: Observing Paramecia
    7. Review Questions
  32. 30. Investigating Fungi
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure IX-1-1: Observing Zygomycota
    4. Procedure IX-1-2: Observing Ascomycota
    5. Procedure IX-1-3: Observing Basidiomycota
    6. Review Questions
  33. 31. Investigating Simple Plants: Mosses and Ferns
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure X-1-1: Observing Moss Structures
    4. Procedure X-1-2: Observing Fern Structures
    5. Review Questions
  34. 32. Investigating Seed Plants
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure X-2-1: Observing Germination of a Seed Plant
    4. Procedure X-2-2: Observing Root Structures
    5. Procedure X-2-3: Observing Stem Structures
    6. Procedure X-2-4: Observing Leaf Structures
    7. Procedure X-2-5: Observing Reproductive Structures
    8. Review Questions
  35. 33. Investigating Porifera and Cnidaria
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure XI-1-1: Observing Porifera
    4. Procedure XI-1-2: Observing Cnidaria
    5. Review Questions
  36. 34. Investigating Platyhelminthes, Nematoda, and Annelida
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure XI-2-1: Observing Platyhelminthes (Flatworms)
    4. Procedure XI-2-2: Observing Nematoda (Roundworms)
    5. Procedure XI-2-3: Observing Annelida (Segmented Worms)
    6. Review Questions
  37. 35. Investigating Arthropods
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure XI-3-1: Observing and Comparing Arthropod Structures
    4. Procedure XI-3-2: Observing Insect Metamorphosis
    5. Review Questions
  38. 36. Investigating Vertebrate Tissues
    1. Equipment and Materials
      1. Materials from Kit
      2. Materials You Provide
    2. Background
    3. Procedure XI-4-1: Observing Epithelial Tissues
    4. Procedure XI-4-2: Observing Connective Tissues
    5. Procedure XI-4-3: Observing Muscle Tissues
    6. Procedure XI-4-4: Observing Nervous Tissues
    7. Review Questions
  39. Index
  40. About the Authors
  41. Copyright