The Analogy Cell
- Poster board
- Magazines and newspapers
What to Do:
First, you will need to decide if you’re focusing on plant or animal cells. Once you decide, you will need to research the structures of each cell. You must determine what function each of these structures serves. Next, you will need to find some kind of larger object that performs the same function in your day-to-day life. For example, a chloroplast is similar to a restaurant in that it gathers raw materials and uses them to produce food we can eat. Use newspapers or magazines to locate and cut out pictures that correspond to these real-world objects.
You complete this project by drawing your cell on your poster board and including the structures you found analogies for. You should then paste pictures of the objects you found around the cell, including an explanation on how these objects are like the cell part they are analogous to.
This chapter on the parts of cells can help you review what you need to know you begin this project. These video lessons are short and easy to understand, allowing you to brush up on the functions of different parts of cells.
3-D Cell Model
This fun project lets students create a cell model of their own!
Students can pick what supplies will work best for their model. Options could include:
- Pipe cleaners
- Bubble wrap
This project gives students a lot of creativity to design their cell the way they’d like. Have them pick either a plant or an animal cell. The rest is up to them! You can make suggestions about the materials they use. Styrofoam and clay work great, but what about using bubble wrap for a cell membrane and pipe cleaners for cilia? Whatever your students decide, the model should be large enough for everyone to see and the parts should be clearly labeled, either on the model or on a separate diagram.
Students can support their project with the information in this chapter on cell biology. They can find engaging information about parts of the cell and how they work together. Students can also communicate with instructors to get answers to questions while they work on their project independently.
Plant Cell Cake
- 9×13 baking dish
- Cake batter
- Cutting utensil
- White frosting
- Fondant icing
- Food coloring
1. Bake the cake.
2. Use your cutting utensil to shape the cake like a plant cell.
3. Add the white frosting to the cake.
4. Use the fondant and food coloring to make the different cell parts.
5. Place the various cell parts on top of the cake.
Household Items Cell
- Rectangular container with lid
- Uncooked pasta noodles
- Sticky tabs
1. Cover sides of container with paper or tape.
2. Use household items as cell parts and place on lid of container.
3. Label the parts of the cell by creating a legend to go along with your model.
Play Dough Plant Cell
- Play dough (homemade or store-bought)
- Plastic wrap
- Sticky tabs
1. Lay out a piece of plastic wrap.
2. Place play dough on the plastic wrap and flatten to plant cell shape.
3. Use different play dough colors to design the parts of the cell.
4. Press parts into flattened play dough section.
5. Use toothpicks and sticky tabs to label cell parts.
Styrofoam Cell Model
A model of an animal cell can be made using a Styrofoam ball and other small objects, such as clay, pasta noodles, beads, cardboard and a sponge. Simply cut the Styrofoam ball in half or remove a cross section to reveal the inside of your cell, then add your chosen objects to represent the cell parts. A round sponge can be used to represent the nucleus, pasta noodles could be used to represent the Golgi apparatus and the beads could be used for the mitochondrion. Glue your objects to the Styrofoam ball and label accordingly.
You may wish to take a look at these lessons on the parts of a cell to help you create and label your cell model.
Edible 3-D Model Using Gelatin
To create this type of 3-D model, you will need to first make gelatin. Light colors work best because they allow you to easily see through your model. Make sure to use slightly less water than usual, as this will create a more solid substance that will help your cell parts stay in place.
Once the gelatin is cool, pour it into a plastic bag. You may find it easier to do this if you place the plastic bag into a container. Leave some space in the bag so that all of your cell parts will fit. Then, close the bag and put it into the refrigerator to finish cooling.
When the gelatin is almost ready, begin to add your cell parts. You can use gummy worms, M&Ms, gumdrops or licorice to serve as the parts of the cell. Once you have included all of your cell parts, seal up the plastic bag and put it back in the refrigerator to finish setting. The best part about this cell model project is that it can be eaten when you’re all finished, so make sure to include your favorite candies as your cell parts!
Most of the work in this project involves making the ‘cytoplasm.’ To learn more about its function and why it’s important, view this lesson on the cytoplasm.
Here´s a link for more ideas on making models.
And these links might help to learn more about cells!!
Rubric for oral presentation
- Mati H, Facundo and Santi Y.
- Joaco, Juansi and Tommy
- Mati Campion, Mati Carreira and Santi G.
- Mora, Juana and Emilia
- Paz, Feli and Nico G
- Serena, Elo and Federico
- Carolina and Pilar
- Manu, Nico Larralde and Lucas
Remember we are all going to assess all the work following the rubric.
Your work will be seen and shared at school. And it must also be shared on your blogs.
Remember to state who you work with, and describe all the process:
how you got organized
where you got the info
any drawbacks and how you solved them
any possible improvement for your next project
And this is the final product!!!!