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A four-page reading passage that introduces basic cell terminology. I wrote this passage to introduce cells to my students while covering Characteristics of Life and MS-LS1-1 (Living things are made of cells), so we are not yet focusing on organelle and the structures and functions.
Vocabulary introduced in the passage includes: cells, organisms, unicellular, multicellular, prokaryotic, eukaryotic, organelle, cell membrane, semipermeable, cytoplasm, nucleus, DNA, function, structure, nucleoid, chloroplast, cell wall, specialized
Concepts introduced: Cells as the basic building blocks of life, different types of cells (uni- and multicellular, prokaryotic vs. eukaryotic, animal and plant cells), levels of organization, and looking at cells under a microscope.
My students read this passage before looking at cells through a microscope for the first time, in advance of completing the cheek cell lab and identifying living and non-living things. The few organelles that are introduced are organelles that students might be able to identify under a compound light microscope. The pictures were pulled from multiple sources cited on the last page.