Tag Archives: infectious organisms project

Evolution: Infectious Organisms Project Comic Work

For the final phase of the Infectious Organisms project, it is time to put together what you have learned into something easily shared with others.  A comic strip is one way to share information both with words and images.  Using the information contained in your organism-specific article summary worksheets, and carefully reviewing the project rubric to be sure you have the necessary information, it is time to create your comic strip.  Your work must be original – you may refer to existing comic strips for inspiration only.  We have different sized paper available: large poster paper, 8.5″ x 14″ long printer paper, and 8.5″ x 11″ standard printer paper.  Use the paper that works best for you and your project.  Include as many panels as you need to tell your story.  Be creative!

Students have been quite successful using comic creator websites like  MakeBeliefsComix.com, Pixton.com, and StoryBoardThat.com so if the thought of drawing your own comic is overwhelming, try using an online resource to help you with the artwork so you can focus on the content.  There are several other comic creator websites on the Internet, so find one that works best for you.

Comics are due at the beginning of class on Wednesday.  All comics must be ready to share in paper form, so if you create a comic online, be sure to print it!  On Wednesday, you will get to see everyone else’s work and they will see yours, so use your class time well to make a comic strip you are proud of.

Evolution: Infectious Organisms Project Research

First, a couple of brief housekeeping items.  Google Classroom once again proved to be too cumbersome to use as a classroom tool, so all documents pertaining to the Infectious Organisms Project will be stored here on the class website.  Additionally, rather than have one long running project post, I have decided to write separate posts for smaller chunks of work to help students locate information quickly and easily.

Onward!  At the beginning of class, students will find out which infectious organism they have been assigned to research.  The vast majority of students elected to work individually, so I have made the decision that while students may collaborate, they will need to turn in their own individual project.  Students will have today (Wednesday, May 3) and tomorrow (Thursday, May 4) to deeply research their organism.  Learn as much as you can!  Read, watch videos, talk with each other to share resources, and let me know if you are struggling to find information or are unsure if the resources you are using are scientifically credible.  By Friday, each student must complete two more Article Summary Worksheets for the two best articles found for their assigned organism.

Due at the beginning of class on Friday, May 5:

  • Article Summary Worksheet completed for the Biological Warfare Case Study (assigned yesterday) – read through all 12 slides!
  • Answers to the four questions found on slide 1 of the above case study
  • Two additional completed Article Summary Worksheets (see sentence in bold red text above)

Also from yesterday, here is a link to the project rubric.

A few resources to help with your research:

Ready to start working on your comic strip?  The rubric provides a list of content to include in the comic strip.  A successful comic strip will be easy to read, have pictures that help explain what is happening, and it should take the complicated information you read about and craft it into a form that is easy to understand but is also informative.  The topics are pretty intense, and comics often have some humor in them, so if you can lighten the mood in an appropriate way using a bit of humor, your reader will appreciate it!

For students excited to draw their comic strip by hand, we have poster paper (go big!) and 8.5″ x 14″ printer paper along with pens, colored pencils, and crayons.  Prefer to go digital?  A Google search for “comic strip creator” will provide several website options.  Find the one you like best and get to work!

Evolution: Zombie Parasites

After a thorough examination of the process of evolution, it is time to apply our learning!  We will begin with a PowerPoint to briefly discuss the concept of infectious organisms, with an emphasis on thinking about how the co-evolution of organisms has resulted in complex relationships between organisms.  Students will define the vocabulary terms of host, bacteria, virus, parasite, and infection.  Next, we will watch a National Geographic video about zombie parasites.  The presenter, Anand Varma, applies his expertise in photography to the study of parasites.  Mr. Varma travels the world collecting specimen for study, and his ability to apply biological concepts to his work, think creatively, and drive to overcome failure make him and his work truly remarkable.