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Carolina LabSheets

  • Introduction to Prokaryotes: Bacteria What are bacteria? In this introductory lab students make smears of bacteria on microscope slides from pure cultures, perform a simple stain, and observe their stained slides under a microscope View »
  • Introduction to Prokaryotes: Archaea In this lab, students are introduced to Halobacterium, a representative of the Archaea, one of the three domains of life (along with Bacteria and Eukarya). View »
  • Introduction to Sterile Technique In this lab, students practice transfer of a bacterial culture using sterile technique. View »
  • Introduction to Fungi This lab introduces students to the Kingdom Fungi through study of two phyla, the zygomycetes and basidiomycetes. View »
  • Isolating Bacteria from a Mixture How does a microbiologist isolate bacteria from a sample? In this lab students practice streaking a plate to isolate a single species of bacterium from a known mixture. View »
  • Wisconsin Fast Plants® and Product Testing In this inquiry activity, students conduct experiments to determine if a commercial product effects the germination of Wisconsin Fast Plants® seed. In doing so they practice basic science skills including collecting and graphing data, interpreting data, and doing serial dilutions. View »
  • Introduction to Prokaryotes: Cyanobacteria In this lab students observe two examples of cyanobacteria and make a simple comparison to a eukaryotic green alga. View »
  • Bacterial Growth on MacConkey Agar In this lab students culture three bacteria on nutrient agar and MacConkey agar and record the results. View »
  • Seed Germination In this inquiry activity students in grades 5-10 design and conduct an experiment to investigate factors that may affect seed germination. View »
  • Investigating Seed Germination The story of how a seed becomes a plant is fascinating to young students. These activities for grades K-4 will help your students explore the process of germination, seed structure, and early seedling growth. View »
  • Investigating Hatching of Brine Shrimp Eggs In this lab students study the hatching of brine shrimp eggs and design an experiment to see what factors influence hatching. View »
  • Embryology with Rhabditis In this lab students observe cleavage of fertilized eggs of female Rhabditis. View »
  • Basic Mold Showplate Set This introduction to fungi focuses on the production of asexual spores by three fungi: Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Rhizopus. View »
  • Bacterial Motility In this lab, students perform two exercises that investigate microbial motility. One is on a microscopic level, using the “hanging drop” slide preparation method to directly observe motile cells. The second exercise is on a macroscopic level and involves inoculating motility test media. View »
  • Bacterial Hydrolysis of Starch In this lab, students culture two bacteria on potato dextrose agar, which contains starch. When grown on potato dextrose agar, bacteria that can secrete amylase—an enzyme that hydrolyzes starch—create a zone around their colonies in which starch is absent. When the agar is flooded with iodine solution, most of the plate stains dark blue–black, but clear areas are left around colonies that secrete amylase. View »
  • Bacterial Hydrolysis of Lipids In this lab, students culture two species of bacteria on agar medium that contains an emulsion of plant oils and the dye, sprit blue, which forms a complex with the triglycerides of the oils and gives an opaque blue color to the agar. Colonies of bacteria that can secrete lipase, an enzyme that hydrolyzes triglycerides, develop a light area or “halo” in the surrounding medium, due to the diffusion of lipase into the medium and the resultant breakdown of the oil/spirit blue complex. View »
  • Bacterial Hydrolysis of Casein In this lab, students culture two bacteria on skim milk agar. The protein casein gives milk its white color. Some bacteria secrete protease enzymes that can hydrolyze casein. When these bacteria are grown on skim milk agar a clear area develops around the colonies, indicating that casein has been hydrolyzed into its component amino acids. View »
  • Bacteria: The Indole Test In this lab students perform a differential test to distinguish bacteria based on the production of indole. Bacteria are grown on media containing tryptophan and then treated with Kovac’s reagent. If they possess the enzyme tryptophanase, the bacteria can metabolize tryptophan into indole, pyruvic acid, and ammonia. View »
  • Bacteria: The Citrate Test In this lab students perform a test on two different bacteria to determine whether the organisms can use citric acid as their sole carbon source. The citrate test is often performed as part of the IMViC (Indole, Methyl Red, Voges-Proskauer, and Citrate) series of tests used to differentiate common species of enteric bacteria. View »
  • Introduction to Photosynthesis Using Coleus Plants The simple exercises that students perform in this lab demonstrate that plants produce glucose through photosynthesis, that plants convert at least some of the glucose to starch, and that sunlight is a critical factor in photosynthesis. View »
  • Observing Plant Cells In this lab students observe Elodea leaves under magnification. They will see cell walls and chloroplasts. From the movement of chloroplasts they will infer that cyclosis, or protoplasmic streaming, is occurring. They also will observe that most chloroplasts are pressed tightly against the cell wall and should infer from this that much of the cell is occupied by a vacuole. View »