Contact: firstname.lastname@example.orgWelcome to my class. The first thing you need know is that I love science. It doesn't even matter what aspect of science. I simply find science exciting.
You see, science is constantly changing. We find more information every day; from medical to astronomical to geological to environment, there is always something new!
I hold a PhD in Science Education/Biology from the University of Southern Mississippi. I am certified to teach most of the sciences. (Like I said, it doesn't matter what science, I love science!) I teach Advanced Placement Biology, Biomedical Research and Chemistry at MCHS. Each class is unique and takes effort, but as one of my students, I will do my best to help you master the material for the course in which you are enrolled.
However, this doesn't mean that you will have an easy A. You are required to put forth effort.
I look forward to working with you this school year.
2018 AP Biology Summer Assignment
Thank you for joining my class! This will be a busy year for us. This summer assignment will get you going. AP Biology is all about living systems. This includes everything from the molecules inside cells, to the workings of human body systems to the interactions in ecosystems. In the course, everything we learn will be connected to one of four themes of biology: evolution, energy use, information, and interactions.
This full year course is designed to cover the same material as a two semester college level course. The class is a flipped classroom, where you will have assignments in advance to prepare for the next lesson. In order to be successful you will need to put in a lot of time and effort. This class is not about simply memorizing information, but you will be asked to think critically, read, write well, do math (eek!) and formulate your own ideas about the living world. To do well in the class, you need to ask lots of questions and think about what you are learning.
Laboratory exercises will be an integral part of the course. You will complete the written lab assignments and then develop an inquiry component for the lab and test it. What does that mean? You will change the variables of the written experiment and run it again. This inquiry part of each lab will be written in a lab report. We will discuss lab reports during class.
Now for the summer assignments (yes, there are 2):
Part 1: Reading
Evolution is a major theme throughout biology. Evolution, by definition, is modification through descent. This will be embedded in all lessons, especially our genetics units.
- a single-subject, spiral notebook or composition book to be your reading journal. Number the pages in the upper, outer corner of the journal.
- Your Inner Fish by Neil Shubin
1st page: Your name, book title, author of book
2nd page: table of contents
3rd page: your thoughts about evolution. I am asking for your ideas before reading the book. Don’t worry. This is your ideas and cannot be counted as wrong.
Each chapter should have its own page(s). Do not put the questions from 2 chapters on the same page. Each chapter should be marked within the table of contents. All work must be handwritten. Write each question and underline it. Then follow up with your answer using complete sentences. Also include images (rough sketches) of one thing from each chapter.
As you read each chapter of Your Inner Fish, answer following questions:
Chapter 1: Finding your Inner Fish
- What types of rocks are likely to contain the fossil the author is looking for?
- What was special about tiktaalik?
- How is tiktaalik like us?
Chapter 2: Getting a Grip
- How did the theory of evolution by natural selection (Charles Darwin’s) explain the similarities observed by Richard Owen?
- What did tiktaalik’s fins tell us about its lifestyle?
Chapter 3: Handy Genes
- Describe the experiments done on chick embryos in the 1950’s and 1960’s that showed how the pattern of development was controlled by two specific spots of tissue.
- What is the significance of the hedgehog gene? Sonic hedgehog gene?
Chapter 4: Teeth Everywhere
- Why do teeth make great fossils?
- What are conodonts? How are conodonts connected to us?
- What is the connection between scales, feathers, breasts and teeth?
Chapter 5: Getting Ahead
- What is strange about the trigeminal and facial nerves in humans?
- What structures in humans form from the four embryonic (gill) arches?
- What are HOX genes?
- What is so important about amphioxus?
Chapter 6: The Best Laid (Body) Plans
- What are the three germ layers in animals and what organs develop from each?
- What is a blastocyst?
- What is the Noggin gene?
- Even though sea anemone and humans are very different, explain why we can say they have similar body plans.
Chapter 7: Adventures in Bodybuilding
- What is the most common protein in the human body?
- How do cells stick to each other? Give a specific example.
- Explain how cells communicate with each other.
- What environmental conditions would have favored the evolution of “bodies”?
Chapter 8: Making Scents
- How do we perceive a smell?
- Why do mammals have so many odor genes compared to fish?
Chapter 9: Vision
- Why do humans and old world monkeys have such similar vision?
- Where do we find the Pax 6 gene and what does it do?
Chapter 10: Ears
- What part of the ear is unique to mammals?
- What evidence is there to suggest that the parts of mammal’s ears are actually the parts of the jaws of reptiles?
- Explain the function of the Pax 2 gene.
Chapter 11: The Meaning of it All
- What is Neil Shubin’s biological “law of everything”?
- There are many examples of human diseases that are the result of our complex evolutionary history.
Video component of the reading journal:
There has been a series of videos based on this book. Follow this link to watch the first episode in this series.
Why was this ancestral fish found in the artic region? What was its original habitat? Describe this habitat.
Choose two ailments from those below and explain how our evolutionary heritage “gave” us this problem. Research these on the internet. Be sure to create a resource page that identifies the sites you used to gather information. Please know that wiki, about, or other sites are not valid sources of information.
Type 2 Diabetes
High blood pressure
Final part of the reading journal: Now that you’ve read this book and watched a video, respond to this final question:
What are your views on evolution? Again, there is no incorrect response to this – as long as you have a response!
This completes Part 1.
Pictorial Scavenger Hunt
In this part of the assignment you are to take original images with your device. Emphasis on the ORIGINAL. To prove originality, you must either 1) be in the photo or 2) have your ID/License in the photo. Taking a picture of an image on your computer screen or a book doesn’t count!
This is due the first week of school.
Natural items only! Some specimens may be used for more than one item, but all must be from something that you have found in nature. If you use an image more than once, then you have to make a copy of the picture to fit that term. One term = one image.
Where should you look for these images? OUTSIDE! Most can be found around your house, but there are many lovely local parks as well as state and federal parks that you can visit. Do you have to be in the state to do this? No. Where ever you travel during the summer you can work on this assignment. I would love to see images of your travels.
Create a power point (Microsoft), keynote (Apple), or Prezi using your images. You may also use google slides or open office.
The opening slide of this project must be the “coversheet” that will include your name, grade level, and an image of yourself outside.
Create one slide for each term. You will select 50 terms from the list below. For each term you will take a photo that connects to that image. Some of these will be difficult. For example, if you chose the term phloem, you could submit an image you have taken of a leaf or plant stem. For each image and term, you must provide on the slide an explanation how the image represents the term.
Recap: 51 slides total
Slide 1: your cover page
Slides 2-51: term, image, explanation per slide
You will have to do some research on terms with which you are unfamiliar. You have a computer. Use it!
Terms are on the next page
Email me if you have questions. Also, as soon as you finish the project email it to me as a pdf. That way it won’t change from your vision of the project. If you are doing this as a Prezi or other online media, send me a link with the final product.
- Adaptation of an animal
- Adaptation of a plant
- Adaptive radiation
- Allopatric Speciation
- Amino Acids
- Animal that has a segmented body
- Active Transport
- Anther & filament of stamen
- Auxin producing area of a plant
- Batesian mimicry
- Bee Waggle Dance
- C 4 plant
- Calvin cycle
- Carbohydrate – fibrous
- Carrying Capacity
- Cell cycle
- Cell Division
- Connective tissue
- Cuticle layer of a plant
- Dicot plant with flower & leaf
- Diploid chromosome number
- Epithelial tissue
- Food Chain
- Greenhouse Effect
- Genetic Variation
- Genetic Diversity
- Genetically modified organism
- Haploid chromosome number
- Keystone Species
- Leaf – gymnosperm
- Lipid used for energy storage
- Littoral zone organism
- Long-day plant
- Lac Operon
- Modified leaf of a plant
- Modified root of a plant
- Modified stem of a plant
- Monocot plant with flower & leaf
- Mitosis or Meiosis
- Nymph stage of an insect
- Parenchyma cells
- Protein – fibrous
- Protein – globular
- Predator - Prey
- Positive Feedback Loop
- Radial symmetry
- Scale from animal with two chambered heart
- Stem – herbaceous
- Stem – woody
- Sympatric Speciation
- Immune System
- Unicellular organism
- Vascular plant tissue