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Collection of Reviewed Teaching Resources

STAMINA CELL - Blood cell observations under a microscope

Subject taught
- Biology


Type of Product
- Web Site/Portal

Language Skills Developed
- Reading

Transferable/Scientific Skills Developed
Knowing how to identify the figured elements of the blood and associate them with their functions; become familiar with the microscope.

General aims
The main objective of the resource is to identify the components of blood cells by observing a virtual slide of blood smear.
The identification is mainly based on the observation of the presence or absence of a nucleus and cytoplasmic granules. Other useful features are cell size, nuclear size
and shape, chromatin functionality and cytoplasmic
staining. The resource ends with a quiz that greatly helps students in the classification and recognition of the different classes of white blood cells

Linguistic aims
• To improve language skills in L2
• To enrich scientific vocabulary
• To know how to move from one linguistic register to another
• To produce clear and coherent texts in L2
• To summarize written texts
Subject specific aims
• To know the composition of the blood and its main functions;
• to describe the characteristics of its corpuscular component;
• to connect the different cellular elements of the blood (red blood cells, white blood cells, platelets) with their functions;
• to understand the importance in the functionality of red blood cells;
• to identify the component cells of a typical blood smear;
• to distinguish the different classes of white blood cells.

Target group age
14-15 years

Level of competence in English (CEFR)

Time required to use the resource with the students
3h 2h analysis of the resource
1h laboratory activity
How to use it
The teacher introduces and illustrates the resource with a frontal and interactive lesson, involving students and stimulating their attention and participation. The class is divided into small groups, each of which is dedicated to analyzing and comparing what has been learned. To facilitate understanding of the text, the resource is divided into short paragraphs that students must summarize and schematize. In addition, students must learn to recognize the various blood cells by studying and comparing the various images present in the resource. This will help them recognize and analyze the slides they will then see during laboratory activity.
In the laboratory activity, students will have to observe a slide of blood smear already prepared (in school laboratories fresh blood use is forbidden). A 200-fold magnification is sufficient to observe and identify the different cell types.
Numerous erythrocytes and some isolated white blood cells can be observed
At the end of the observation and identification of the cells, the students will have to make a short report, answer a questionnaire provided by the teacher and discuss both within their own group and
with the other groups.
Finally, to enhance digital skills, each group will have to present
their work done in a power point, or with a movie, with an animation,
etc. The work will be presented to different classes

Possible difficulties for the students
Recognition of leukocytes under a microscope

Strength/Weakness The resource addresses and explains the topic clearly and completely and guides students well in recognizing the various cell types. Scientific reliability The resource is taken from the Yale School of Medicine website Pedagogical value (e.g. collaborative learning, self–directed learning, peer assisted learning, etc) The methodology used is essentially based on laboratory teaching and collaborative learning. Laboratory teaching is very effective, in fact it promotes not only the operation, but mainly the dialogue, the reflection on what is done thus offering students the opportunity to personally build their knowledge. In addition, it encourages students to actively participate in knowledge that occurs out of curiosity and challenge. Finally, the laboratory is the ideal place to investigate, analyze and reflect, and where students can test and apply theories by making abstract concepts concrete. With cooperative learning, students learning in small groups and helping each other feel co-responsible for the mutual path and objectives achieved.

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