Teaching BIO 101 (& a mental break from thinking about {strange} sex)

I’m really excited to teach this first lesson of my BIO class. I actually wish I had started out teaching this class. Introducing the awesomeness of science to people all over again is just really really fun. I love showing how we can explain the commonality we have with all life on earth. How we’re all made of the same starstuff. And how biology (and the chemistry of biology) is still very much relevant to our day to day lives. And how not everything is discovered, that there is still something to wonder at, still something new to know every day. Anyway I’m rhapsodizing. Here’s what’s on the docket for my lecture on Monday:

How does Biology relate to you?

– I’ll be trying to incorporate biology as it relates to their specific majors as my students in this specific class are NOT science majors. 

What is Biology?

The study of life on Earth of course! 



I made this slide isn’t it great?? I made my own reversed pyramid too, how fancy. 

We’ll have an intro to the properties of life, classification of life, the scientific method, critical thinking, theories and parts of an experiment. 

In my second powerpoint for Ch. 2: The Chemistry of Life (which we’ll also be covering on Monday) I am discussing the Radium girls! A fascinating case study from history that connects biology with technology and working conditions. I first learned about the Radium girls in the very informative and interesting book “The Poisoner’s Handbook” by Deborah Blum.


the slide shows the old ads for the watches that the radium girls painted with the glow in the dark numbers. I also have a picture of the women working in the workshop. The woman with the chin and the scary looking knee are some of the women and the effect Radium had on their skeletons. I included the periodic table so I can introduce its concept to my students and point out Radium on it. I also put an atomic map of Radium as well. 

In this portion we’ll be discussing what atoms are, how elements are organized in the periodic table, chemical bonds, the chemistry of water and a few more things I can’t think of off the top of my head. 

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