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Introduction to Cells

Organelles in animal and plant cells

This minds-on analysis and discussion activity begins with an anchor phenomenon – a video of a eukaryotic cell chasing and eating a bacterium. This leads to analyses of how cells carry out the activities of life and the similarities and differences between eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells.

Additional topics include the functions of the organelles in eukaryotic cells and the differences between animal and plant cells.

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 a previous version of 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.docx3.17 MB
cells introduction SHO.pdf601.92 KB
cells introduction TN.docx7.39 MB
cells introduction TN.pdf928.63 KB


iwaldron's picture

2023 revision

The Student Handout has been revised to focus on the most important points, including an anchoring phenomenon presented in a recommended video. I have also improved the logical flow and clarity. The Teacher Notes have been reorganized to correspond to the revised Student Handout. I have also added updated, recently published information to the Teacher Notes.


Serendip Visitor's picture

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.

iwaldron's picture

Thank you for your feedback

I appreciate that you have let me know that our resources are helpful to you.



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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