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Need help teaching 2nd graders

K N and P J Harris ecoli at cix.compulink.co.uk
Fri Jan 24 15:38:33 EST 1997

Enzymes (or extra microbial activity) around roots is a nice idea.
Try getting your students to get hold of some unexposed but processed 
color slide film. Best if mounted. This can be put into moist soil and 
after about 4 to 7 days the soil bugs will have started to dissolve the 
geletin holding the pigments and with careful washing will produce some 
terrific "abstract" color pictures when projected.
NOW - having got a feel for how long to leave the slides (diapositives) 
in the pot of soil, plant some rapid germinating and growing seeds and 
let the roots grow down over the slide surfaces. There SHOULD be extra 
activity and extra colour shifting in the root zones.
Anyway, it's cheap and fun and nothing beats getting the soil bugs to 
"take pictures of themselves" or at least their enzyme activity !
Peter Harris, Reading, UK.

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