Our monthly Internet search for the best free teaching resources for bio teachers has arrived at a winner: The University of Utah's Genetic Science Learning Center's "Cell Size and Scale" interactive. Check it out!
Cell Size and Scale, an elegant and deceptively simple interactive from the University of Utah's Genetic Science Learning Center, enables you to compare the sizes of various really small things. The interactive is available free on the Internet and works on desktop computers, smart phones, and tablets.
Starting with a coffee bean, you can scroll across to see how huge the coffee bean is compared to a grain of salt, a red blood cell, the measles virus and, finally, a carbon atom.
Moving a slider at the bottom of the interactive takes you on a highly magnified visual tour of progressively smaller objects. The interactive makes it appear that you are driving deeper and deeper into the Land of Small Things. Moving through this landscape at your own speed, you pass more than 30 microscopic objects including a grain of salt, a skin cell, the flu virus, a water molecule, and other even tinier objects. Travelers are encouraged to stop along the way.
This interactive places objects that are invisible to your naked eye into their own microscopic world. The slow transition from coffee bean to atom helps you relate each item to familiar things in the visible world. And, in the upper left corner, the interactive offers a dynamic scale grid that helps you understand the relative size of different objects and their measurement.
This is a fun and exciting tool for teachers to explore with their classes, students to examine on their own, or for anyone else who loves science.
One thing is certain: This amazing tool is one you’ll want to share!