Under the Microscope

I was sent this link from a friend.  She knew that I would love it and so I am sharing it with you.  http://www.danoah.com/35-everyday-things-made-so-insanely-cool-under-a-microscope  It is a collection of images taken from a microscope. (Some may be mislabeled.)  I can think of so many ways to use this in the classroom environment.  

Idea 1: Put one image on the board with the question, “What is this” underneath it. Have the students take 3 minutes to think/brainstorm their ideas about what it could be. Take 2 minutes for them to share their top 3 ideas with a classmate.  Between them decide on 2 to share.  Create a list of all of the things they think that it might be.  Talk about what made them think that it might be the thing that they chose.  What characteristics did they noticed that lead them to their decision.  Did color, texture, or shape play a role in their decision.  Reveal the item to them at the end. 

Idea 2: Use an image as a writing prompt.  Put it on the board to show the students.  Give them 5 minutes to brain storm a story about the image.  If you don’t have a lot of time, then have them simply write down the plan for the story. (characters, setting, main events, etc.)  If you have more time then ask them to write their story.  Print out copies of the picture to go with their story and then have them explain what about the picture made them think about the story. 

Idea 3: Tell the students that you are showing them a picture of something that is very close up.  Ask them to guess what it might be.  What details can you see in the image that you can’t see with the naked eye?  Reveal the item to them. Now take some magnifying glasses out and explore some everyday items in the room.  What observations can they make? What textures, states of matter, colors, shapes, etc. do they see?

Idea 4: Use an image to start a conversation about texture.  What texture do you think they item being shown is?  What characteristics make you think that it is soft, hard, scratchy, etc.?  How could we find out what texture it is?  Then reveal the item and see if they were right.

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