Reflection: Real World Applications Using Algae for Phytoremediation (Part 1/3) - Section 3: Student Experiment


In this experiment, students are modeling the engineering design process by testing a natural method of removing pollution from wastewater.  As seen on the student handout, they are limited in the amount of materials that they can use. It is important to limit the use of equipment because in the real world, waste water treatment plants must stay within a certain budget. Over the course of day 1 and day 2, students collect data at multiple times throughout the day.  

They then use that data to develop a Michaelis-Menken uptake kinetic curve (Note: this is done on day 2).

Next students will compare their curve to a real-world study (Note: this is done on day 3).  I use an actual study because depending on the species of algae, this process can take up to 12 days.  Check out my teacher reflection videos for a more detailed explanation of this learning and lab process.

Check out this teaching reflection where I explain how students collect data throughout the school day. I also continue to discuss my reasoning for using student data collection, analysis, and comparison to experts' findings on day 2 and day 3 of this lab. 

Some years one do not have student buy-in or they just do a terrible job collecting data.  Check out this teaching reflection for some options if students are not as careful as necessary in data collection. 


  Real World Applications: Organizing a multi-day lab: Collect Data
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Using Algae for Phytoremediation (Part 1/3)

Unit 4: Protists
Lesson 5 of 11

Objective: Students will test algae's ability to remove pollutants from waste water to better understand phytoremediation.

Big Idea: Algae are amazing living things especially when it comes to clean-up.

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Ecology, Science, pollution, homeostasis, stability and change, Protists, Ecosystem Dynamics, Impact of human activities
  49 minutes
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