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Introduction to Cells

Organelles in animal and plant cellsIn this minds-on analysis and discussion activity, students learn about the characteristics shared by all cells, the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells, and the differences between animal and plant cells.

Students analyze the reasons why cells are so small. They also learn about the diverse chemical capabilities of prokaryotes, the functions of the organelles in eukaryotic cells, and how organelles work together to accomplish the activities of life.     

The Student Handout is available in the first two attached files and as a Google doc designed for use in distance learning and online instruction. (For additional instructions, see, especially item 7.) The Teacher Notes are available in the third and fourth attached files. The Teacher Notes provide instructional suggestions and background information and explain how this activity is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards. I am grateful to David Upegui, Central Falls High School, for generously agreeing to share a PowerPoint presentation to accompany this activity (


Crawling Neutrophil Chasing a Bacterium

(This video is taken from a 16-mm movie made in the 1950s by the late David Rogers at Vanderbilt University.)   

cells introduction SHO.docx15.73 MB
cells introduction SHO.pdf682.47 KB
cells introduction TN.docx5.11 MB
cells introduction TN.pdf744.74 KB


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Thank you!

Thank you for sharing these resources. They are very helpful. I was teaching physics for 9 years and suddenly find myself with 2 high school biology courses.

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Anatomy and Physiology with Pathophysiology

I am a Nurse by profession and chose to be in the academe. This was very helpful to me and I am grateful for your generosity in sharing these learning and instructional mats with us.

iwaldron's picture

Thank you!

I appreciate your kind comments.


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