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Chapter 2 Blog:  The Chemical Basis of Life I (Peter)

Page history last edited by Peter Falk 13 years ago

In the first section of this page, you will write a daily summary of that day's class.  For example in  your chapter 2 blog, your first entry should be titled 9/3/10.  You should then write a one or two paragraph summary of that day's lecture, outlining the major points.  In the second section, you are required to add two items (link to a website, video, animation, student-created slide show, student-created PowerPoint presentation) and one journal article pertaining to a topic in this chapter.  A one-paragraph summary must accompany each item describing the main idea and how it applies to the lecture topic.  Please see the PBWorks help guide for assistance embedding video and other items directly in the page.  I will also produce a how-to video on using tables to wrap text around items and other useful tips.  Please see the syllabus for organization and grading details.


A.  Daily Blog

9/3/10: Today was the first "real" day of biology lecture. Wednesday was just a review of the syllabus thats been online for a while now, today was the first  day of actually learning and going over the material. Today we were introduced to the technology that allows us to submit answers for various polls and questions that are posted onto the screen via text message, which I thought was really innovative. Ive never been in a class with anything like that before, and I doubt I will be again for a while. The text-in polls were quite helpful, as it allowed for multiple people to answer questions without having to raise hands and it could show whether we do actually get the material, because I think people will be more honest in answering the questions if it is anonymous. In addition, I think the anonymity will be encouraging for people who may be shy or self-conscious about answering questions. 

     The actual lesson we went over in class today was about atoms, and most (but not all) of it was a review. We started with isotopes, and what they are (atoms of the same element but a different number of neutrons) and what some of their practical applications are (PET scans, dating of ancient objects, to name a few).  The we discussed the structures of molecules, and the different kind of bonds that they make (ionic, polar, covalent). In addition, units of measurement for atomic weights was briefly discussed (Daltons and Moles). 


9/8/10- Today was our second day of Biology lecture.  The main focus of the lesson today was about water, and all of the special properties that is and why its so useful and abundant in nature. A few of these properties include cohesion, adhesion, surface tension and the ability of water to break covalent bonds (hydrolysis reaction).  More or less, the special attributes that make it so darn useful in life can be attributed to the hydrogen bonds that are continually formed and broken in the liquid form of water. Towards the end of class we began to discuss pH and what being an acid and a base means on a molecular level. The discussion of pH was finished in a Virtual Lecture.



B.  Useful Materials



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This nifty little video demonstrates the cohesion powers of water by showing that it can hold 35 drops of water, which is pretty remarkable. Concepts are always easier to understand in action, and this video does a good job of that.  It applies to lecture because we spent quite a bit of time discussing how special water is, and this demonstrates one of those properties. 
  This table shows pH and gives examples of items found at each pH level. What I found most interesting was that it displays the concentration of hydrogen ions compared to distilled water, which shows how pH works with log and it how it increases and decreases tenfold between degree of pH. In addition, this is the first pH scale i've seen that shows this information. Although soapy water having a pH of 12 seems a little off to me, the rest of the table seems accurate. 

Nutritional intervention in uremia--myth or reality? 

This article discuses how a low protein diet can effect pH balance.  






Comments (5)

Derek Weber said

at 1:49 am on Sep 9, 2010

9/3: Updated. I am glad you enjoyed the polls. We will continue to incorportate as much as possible. Thanks for the feedback.

Derek Weber said

at 2:00 am on Sep 11, 2010

9/8: Updated.

Derek Weber said

at 4:15 am on Sep 16, 2010

9/15: Completed. How does a low protein diet effect pH balance? This is missing in your desciption. Please make sure to bottom line your articles when appropriate.

Peter Falk said

at 7:06 am on Sep 17, 2010

I'll make sure to sum-up the article next time. To be honest, I struggled trying to understand the articles deeply scientific verbiage and had difficulty trying to comprehend what the abstract was saying.

Derek Weber said

at 4:46 am on Sep 23, 2010

If that is the case, see if you can find a more straighforward article.

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