Student Number 1234
Investigation: Cell Structure
Section One: What were you trying to explain and why?
Differences in cells let us distinguish plant cells from an animal cells. The two
share some things in common like a membrane, nucleus, and mitochondria. But there
are specifics for each type of cell that differentiates them, like the centrioles in animal
cells, which help in the process of mitosis and meiosis; and chloroplast in plant cells
which basically carries out photosynthesis. Both these types of cells are classified as
eukaryotes, meanwhile prokaryotic cells, which include things like bacteria, have
different characteristics that make them easy to identify like the flagella. It is important
to know how to identify different organisms and their characteristics, so you have a
better understanding of what you are looking at. My task is to document the traits of the
known and unknown organisms, then classify them based on what you know about the
characteristics of plant and animal cells. The guiding question is, “how should the
unknown organisms be classified?”
Section Two: How did you go about your work and why?
The first thing that was done was preparing a slide, made from a human cheek
cell. The slide was created by taking a tooth pick and scraping cells off the side of the
inside of the cheek. Then we placed that on a slide with a few drops of water. This slide
was observed under the microscope and it held all characteristics of an animal cell, the
membrane and nucleus were clearly visible. Two samples of the cheek cells were created
because one of them was harder to look at and you couldn’t see the parts of the cell. The
next slides observed were prepared slides one plant and one animal cell. The prepared
animal cell was very similar to the cheek cell; the cell did not have a set shape.
Meanwhile the prepared plant cell had more of a rigid structure, the cell wall, the green
chloroplast was extremely visible compared to looking at other samples. For the final
slide it needed to be made from a sample of pond water. Three drops of the sample were
placed on the slide with a cover on top. The slide was then placed under the microscope;
it was harder to see any sort of cell structure in this slide than the previous. There were a
lot of air bubbles rather than cells. Once a cell was found it was difficult to tell whether
it was plant or animal. But there were things that were missing, there was no visible
chloroplast or cell wall, which helped the decision on it being an animal cell.
The data helped me answer the guiding question because we observed what a plant cell
looked like what an animal cell looked like, and what their visible variances were. With
this known information I classified the last slide made from the pond water sample as
an animal cell.
Section Three: The Argument
The unknown cell seems to resemble an animal cell. Unlike the plant cell, the
unknown did not have a rigid cell wall. And it looked more similar to the animal cell
slide samples that had more of an oval shape. Something else that supported the claim is
that we had the information that at one point the cell was alive and moving, just not at
the time it was observed because it had died. The appearance of the cells was obviously
very important in deciding the claim, in the plant cell we saw the dark nucleus and
something that had a honeycomb shape. This was so different from the unknown slide,
which was added support to the claim. After listening to the other groups explanations
and justifications for their claim, ours seemed to resembled all the other groups.
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