In this lab, students explore how osmosis affects the function of single cells. To facilitate student learning, we use the largest single cells available: an egg. Prior to conducting the lab, students read a short background section that familiarizes them with osmosis, cell transport and cells themselves. Teachers can either do this before learning about osmosis as an inquiry learning process, or after, as a final assessment. With the background reading, even students who were absent for the lesson will be able to answer the pre-lab questions and carry out the lab, eliminating the inevitable catch up processes for students who miss a lot of school.
After doing the reading, students answer pre-lab questions and create their hypotheses to activate their learning and prepare for the lab. Instructions for the lab are explicitly explained in the procedures section, so after a whole class demonstration, your students will be able to take hold of their learning and carry out the experiment themselves.
Students will first weight their eggs and then place them in different solutions overnight or the weekend. After osmosis occurs they will calculate the percent change in mass to understand the biological processes happening.
This lab packet also includes a full rough draft template. Often when asked to write a lab report, I hear "I don't know how to start." Well, this won't happen to you again with the sentence starters provided for each section of the lab report. Students will be able to start their lab report on their own, have productive conversations with peers and free your time to work with high needs students and assess their learning.