Wednesday, November 20, 2019

I love helping young scholars unlock their true potential. That "lightbulb" moment is worth all of the effort. I like to engage minds using problem-based learning:

image courtesy of (copyrighted material)

I encourage what I call "Embracing the Struggle." Sometimes, we do our best work when we start backward (from the problem) and work our way towards the solution. I have found that it is a great way to incorporate the concept of scientific inquiry and how to walk through the scientific process. Traditional learning has its place. I believe that problem-based learning, once mastered, is a multi-disciplinary tool that can be used across subjects. Once you understand how to work a problem backwards, you can apply the same strategy to anything. 

What strategies have you found useful in your studies? When you are instructing? 

Does your scholar need help with STEM-related topics? You can book me locally in person or online for distance learning at Frog Tutoring. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Fun Times with Science!
Do you know the difference between fluorescence and bioluminescence?
Fluorescence is when light is absorbed first, then emitted outward (looking like a glowing reflection). An example that you are probably familiar with is a white T-shirt under a black light.
Bioluminescence is when an organism can create their own light without the need to absorb it first. The chemical that allows them to do this is called luciferin. When the enzyme luciferASE (ASE usually indicates enzymatic properties) becomes activated, it breaks down luciferin which results in a natural "glow." An example of this phenomenon would be lightning bugs!
I visited a naturally occurring bioluminescent lake to check out this natural glow. The lake is full of bioluminescent microorganisms. When the water is disturbed, they become "agitated" and the end result is a beautiful blue/green glowing hue. You can hear my heavy breathing as I'm treading water and talking. I had to move vigorously enough to disturb the water to achieve the bright glow that you see (it's not as easy as it looks). I definitely got my cardio in on this one!
Bonus Fun Fact: when you get out of the water your skin sparkles in the dark for a few seconds. How cool is that

Monday, November 18, 2019

Today's lesson in science...and don't you ever let someone tell you otherwise!