Monday, November 12, 2012

OT: Science Project

This is way off topic, but I wanted to share a science project that I made with my 12 year old daughter last year for her 6th grade natural science class.  She was required to make a replica of a cell, whether animal or vegetable didn't matter, as long as it was accurate and labeled the components that make up a typical cell.

We decided that we wanted something that was a little more impressive than your run-of-the-mill school project made with noodles and play-dough.  So after much brainstorming and looking around hobby stores and Home Depot, we decided to go high-tech.

We constructed the cell walls out of plexiglass:
We made a cube out of six pieces of plexi, then build two spacers for inside the cube out of four more pieces.

Connected the pieces of plexi with clear packing tape:
We make sure to keep wrinkles to a minimum and used just enough tape to keep it together.

Added organelles by printing them on 8.5" x 11" labels:
We cut the shapes out using an Xacto hobby knife to be able to keep close to the lines. 

And gave it a little flash with a Sylvania LED "Light Flute":
This was a little tricky.  The hardest part was positioning it close enough to door to be able to turn it on, but not so close as to have it turn on by itself or break the plexi.  I tried cutting a hole in a sheet of plexi for the switch, but ended up breaking it, so we just pushed it up next to the "door" and left it like that.

The final result came out pretty well!  Here are a few pics of how it turned out.

With the lights in the room on:

And again with the lights off! 

We used clear labels to label the individual organelles.  This was a really fun project!  The teacher liked it so much that she kept it!!  It is on permanent display in her class room.  This is not a ham project, but it was still a lot of fun and I wanted to share.  Hopefully it gives you some ideas to use yourself.


Richard, KK4JDO

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