University lab closed? Learn about ELISA assays with these virtual resources.

In my biotech virtual classes, we learned that ELISA assays use antibodies to detect and quantify proteins, but we didn’t have time to study how an ELISA assay works, nor the steps for completing one. To the internet I went and found more resources than I could need!

Here’s what I did to learn, study and commit to memory ELISA basics.

I combined a video, praxilabs.com simulation, and a few websites to get a reasonable understanding of the principles behind the various ELISA assays and the steps involved to complete them.

It turns out that there are several types of ELISA assays and which one you use depends on factors such as cost, time, and sensitivity-level required. The tests are basically broken down into direct ELISA, indirect ELISA, sandwich ELISA (direct or indirect) and competitive ELISA. The video describes each one as does numerous websites. I used the following:

BIO RAD

Cellsignal.com

Bosterbio.com

The sandwich ELISA simulation by praxilabs.com gives you a real feel for the steps you would be required to do in the real world (except that virtual world time compression makes everything faster!). I ran through it once before watching the video, but it made a whole lot more sense after watching the video and creating this free Quizlet.com flashcard set.

My steps for learning about ELISA assays:

1. Watch the ELISA video made by the Biomedical and Biological Sciences YouTube channel. I recommend taking notes to help you really pay attention to the material.

2. Complete the ELISA Sandwich simulation by Praxilabs.com. If you do not have/want a subscription you can watch the video version on YouTube.

3. Deepen and strengthen your knowledge by using these Quizlet flashcards that I made. Here I combine building assay vocabulary with learning the basic steps of most ELISA assays.

My favorite way to use Quizlet is the multiple choice option – click on “Learn”, then click on “Options”. A window will open – scroll down and uncheck the “flashcards” and “written questions” boxes. Now only “Multiple choice questions” is checked.

Diagram attribution: NickCT, CC BY-SA 3.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Learning Biotech in a Pandemic!

Photo by Chokniti Khongchum on Pexels.com

In the fall of 2020 I began coursework in earning a biotechnology certificate from Montgomery College – a top-of-the-line program for which I am very thankful!

Unfortunately the program is 100% virtual right now, which is a tough way to learn laboratory science. My biotech posts are to share how I am supplementing my courses with a variety of online resources to prepare myself for working in a real lab, rather than a virtual one!

  1. Biotech Virtual Learning – Agarose Gel Electrophoresis
  2. Virtual Learning about Protein Electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE)

Check back for new posts!

Practice with Taxonomy

This Internet Activity, made in Google Docs, introduces students to taxonomy with a focus on animal classification. 

Activities Include:

  • Students practice writing scientific names of species within specific classes of vertebrates in the phylum Chordata (such as mammals and birds) and classes of invertebrates in the phylum Arthopoda (such as insects and arachnids).
  • Students learn about differences between reptiles and amphibians.
  • Students match the phylum to the invertebrate such as crabs and sea stars.

The Google Doc can be saved as a PDF and used as a print version too!

Websites Used:

Organism Menu
Classification Group Explanation
bald eagle page
What’s the Difference: Reptile or Amphibian?

See a preview of the worksheet here.

Share the NASA/SpaceX Crew Dragon flight and Artemis mission with your students

I made this Google Slides presentation to make sure my middle school students know about the historic May 30 flight of American astronauts on the first commercial flight to space. Also, many people are not aware of NASA’s Artemis program – the new mission to put people on the moon in 2024 with the purpose of eventually sending people to Mars!

Our students today are the Artemis Generation, but they don’t know it yet! Educate your students about it with this free presentation…

Click on the Image to go to the slide show.

Gotta do electrical circuits virtually? Here’s how!

This activity directs students to experiment with the basics of circuitry, virtually. It works great when distance learning (its a Google doc worksheet) is necessary or as an introductory activity to a hands-on circuitry lab.

The worksheet guides students in making and analyzing circuits using this interactive seen in the video below.

Watch the video for a peek at how the virtual circuit builder works!

Here’s a peek (below) of the 2nd page of the activity worksheet – see the whole thing at this link.

 

Introduce Complete Dominance & Punnett Squares

Includes a Google Doc Version for Distance Learning!

This all-in-one Lesson and Independent Learning Packet can be done in school or entirely at home via Google Docs.

FREE Slide Show – Follow Up with Complete Dominance & Punnett Squares Activity Packet
Click Image to Learn More

I use this activity and worksheets to completely teach dominant and recessive alleles and using Punnett squares to predict inherited traits. To expose my students to the work of Gregor Mendel, who is the founder of the field of genetics, I use his findings on pea shape and color as the example traits.

Lesson Includes:

Introduction using FREE SLIDE SHOW above

Activity (in school or at home) – randomly select dominant and recessive alleles for pea shape and pea color (Mendel’s peas)

Data Analysis – compare predicted probabilities of allele selection to your random selection

Use Punnett Square to Predict Allele Inheritance

Punnett Square Check for Understanding

Unit Confusion Solved!

Many of my students struggle with solving basic physics formula, and most of all, in understanding which units go with the answer to the question being asked.

Is this familiar to you… The question ask for “HOW LONG does it take for the skateboarder to roll 25 meters while moving at 2 m/s?”, and the student answers 12.5 m/s!!!

Students MIGHT use the right equation (time = speed/distance) , but the answer nearly NEVER has the right units – the question is about time or distance and no matter what the student puts “m/s” as part of the answer! Mind boggling to one degree, but this is all new for them and it’s normal to have trouble applying old skills to new problems.

Read the rest of this post at my Better Science Teaching blog.

Physical Science

action balls black and white illustration
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

WebQuests – all in Google Docs

What are Simple and Compound Machines? A Webquest

Build Series & Parallel Circuits, Virtually!

Transverse and Longitudinal Waves

Transverse Waves Worksheet: Wavelength, Amplitude, Frequency and Speed

Review Worksheet: Transverse & Longitudinal (sound) Waves 

Transverse Waves: Warm Ups / Exit Cards to Review Basic Properties

Relative Motion

Relative Motion: One Lesson to introduce relative motion and reference points

Magnets

Inquiry Activity: Magnet Challenge! (NEW) Includes Google Doc Worksheet Option

Generation Science Freebies

The Rock Cycle - A WebquestGraphing with Content 1 - Intro to graphing, data analysis & experimental design

atomic theory timeline ppt coverFree Slide Show
Student Project Worksheet

FREE:  Build Series & Parallel Circuits, Virtually!
Bohr Atomic Model – Warm ups
or Exit Cards: Sample
Element, Compound or Mixture?
Critical Thinking Exercises, Warm-ups or Exit Cards:  Sample
Introduce Chemical Bonding
(Ionic, Covalent, Metallic) –
Note-taking worksheets and

practice exercises: Sample
Chemical Reactions Lab – 4 Easy and
Fun Experiments for Middle or High School: Sample
Nuclear Fusion diagram with
questions
Bacteria Basics – introductory article for students

Go to the Full Generation Science Catalog