Wednesday, July 21, 2010

One of my many first loves

When I left science and the states in 2005, I figured I'd go back to science as soon as I missed it.

Well, now that I'm teaching it and after 5 years away from the lab, I once again miss it. Well, I don't miss all of it, but I really miss some of it.

I've taught cell biology to 8th graders this first term including my true love of an organism responding to environmental signals through up (or down) regulation of genes and the absolutely amazing transcription/translation process. My students produced mostly accurate things like this on their final.

In sophomore chemistry, I'm deep into intermolecular interactions (hydrogen bonds, London dispersion forces) which is the heart of biochemical interactions, protein folding, the structure of DNA...

It's been fun teaching, but with no lab, no running water, no classroom of my own, no materials, no where to set up a project, only a very small desk in the teacher's room to organize all my classes from. I miss DOING science. It's hard to make the classes more hands-on than drawing cartoons of things like the photosynthesis/respiration cycles and watching youtube videos of other people throwing pure Sodium in water... I miss playing with stuff.

Nonetheless, I am immensely proud of my students and how hard they've worked for me. I wish I could give them more, but we do the best we can.

Next week we have summer courses, or as my boss explained to me, glorified babysitting...
So we are going to go the park, talk about plants and insects and try to have as relaxed and hands-on a learning experience possible.

A link to the school's website with a picture of me at the board explaining the difference between types of bonds and a sneaky peak at one of the pages from my Chemistry final, clutched in one of my poor student's hands, available by request. No official link between me and them will be made on the blog.

The adventures continue...

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