7th Life Science Assignments

Jen Lofchie
2021-2022 School Year
Classes ~ K-7th Grade

A hands-on laboratory class focused on life and physical science through labs and projects.  Students will use the scientific method to design and conduct experiments, gain experience in a lab setting, and participate in hands-on projects focused on concepts such as cell structure, genetics, chemical reactions, ecology, microscope use and more.

Assignment Calendar

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Past Assignments


Class on 12/2

We wrapped up our Bird Beak Lab with a video
Then we learned about the fossils and the stories they told.  We used this interactive from UC Berkeley.
Students then played a Kahoot game to review what they learned.


Class on 11/18

Bird Beak Adaptations
People refer to "Darwin's finches" as a symbol of evolution in the Galapagos Islands. They are a group of about 18 species of passerine (sparrow-like) finches. They are well known for their remarkable diversity in beak form and function. In today's class, we performed a simulation of how a bird's beak functions in regards to eating different types of foods. We ran 2 trials, modifying the beak after the first trial to model the process of natural selection and evolution. When we ran the second trial, we saw that the beak modifications allowed for more food to be eaten.


Class on 11/4

Today in class we:
Extracted DNA from strawberries by using common liquids found in the
The steps were:
  • Break-up the fruit to a pulp or mush
  • Second, a solution (dishwashing liquid, iodized salt, and water) was
    added to the fruit pulp to release the DNA from the cell membranes
  • Third, using a strainer, filter the mixture to separate the nucleic acid
    from the remains of the cellular membranes
  • Finally, gently layer isopropyl alcohol over the solution and the DNA becomes visible. 


Class on 10/28

Today in class we:
  • Defined and discussed the following terms: Punnett Square, probability, heterozygous, homozygous
  • Looked at the hitchiker's thumb (mine!) and discussed how it is due to a recessive gene
  • We hypothesized what my parents genotype could be to lead me to have this type of thumb
  • Learned about the skinny pig (a hairless guinea pig) (video)  and determined the probabilities for different genotypes of the offspring based on the genotype of the parents


Class on 10/21

Today in class, I introduced heredity to students.  We discussed the following:
  • What are traits?
  • Discussed the meaning of the following terms and how they are related/how they are different: DNA, gene, chromosome, genome
  • Dominant vs. recessive gene
  • Difference between genotype and phenotype
  • Took an inventory of traits of the people in our class.  Here are our results:
    • detached earlobes 100%
    • tongue rolling 69%
    • dimples 23%
    • freckles 54%
    • naturally curly hair 31%
    • cleft chin 8%
    • allergies 38%
    • cross left thumb over right 77%
    • see the colors red and green (not color blind) 100%
    • widow's peak hairline 0%


Class on 10/14

Today in class, the students:
  • drew a model of the stages of mitosis in their science notebooks
  • worked with a partner to model the stages of mitosis using Oreos and rainbow sprinkles
  • observed the stages of mitosis using a microscope and prepared slides (onion root and whitefish)


Class on 10/7

Today in class:
  • Students presented their cell analogy posters
  • Learned what mitosis is and why it's important
  • Watched a mitosis video


Class on 9/30

Today in class:
  • Students completed their cell analogy poster


Class on 9/23

Today in class we:
  • Played a game to reinforce cell organelles and their function
  • Watched an Ameoba Sisters video
  • Continued work on cell analogy poster


Class on 9/16

Today in class we:
  • Played memory game to match organelle with its function
  • Watched a video about cell function and played 4 corners game
  • Discussed what analogies are and how students will create analogy posters for an animal cell 
  • Students worked in groups to create cell analogy posters:
    • How do the structures and functions of a cell compare to the structures and functions of another real-world system?
    • The systems that students chose for the analogies were: an airport, a library, a public swimming pool, and a prison


Class on 9/9

Today in class we:
  • Learned about the organelles of an animal cell and their function:
    • cell membrane
    • cytoplasm
    • nucleus
    • nucleolus
    • ribosomes
    • endoplasmic reticulum
    • golgi bodies
    • mitochondria
    • lysosomes
    • centriole
    • microtubules


Class on 9/2

Today in class, we:
  • Played an ice-breaker game to get to know each other
  • Discussed science lab rules
  • Discussed 4 main branches of life science (botany, zoology, microbiology, ecology) and discussed professions in each
  • Received science notebook that will stay in class
For the next 4 weeks, we will be studying cell structure and function.