Saturday, February 07, 2009

My classes- Part 1- Biotechnology

So when I was a sophomore, I heard that my school offered a Biotechnology class, and I decided that I had to take it. So I signed up to take it junior year, but I handed in my course sign-up form late, and, as I found out that August, all of the slots had been filled up by seniors.

I went to the school, and talked to my principal (who is actually pretty cool) about what class I should take. I had already taken biology (in 8th grade), chemistry (freshman year), and physics (sophomore year). Biotechnology was filled up. I hadn't taken the required pre-course for AP Biology. I didn't have a high enough grade in Chemistry to take AP Chemistry. I hadn't taken Physics Honors, so I couldn't take AP Physics. Anatomy was also full, so what was left? AP Environmental Science. Enviro was cool, but this year (senior year), I'm finally taking Biotechnology.

And let me tell you, Biotechnology is AWESOME. I love it because it's SO interesting (and the class is great because it's not like an overload of work).

In the fall, we did mostly genetics stuff. The first thing we did was collect our own DNA and look at it under a microscope (which was pretty freaking cool). We also did paternity testing, blood typing (not with real blood!), and crime-scene DNA "fingerprinting". For my final project for the fall term, I did a presentation about Nanotechnology. Dude, nanotechnology is cool (see my post about it if you don't believe me). And the teacher loved the presentation, which was great.

This term, we're basically focused on sustainable living. Definitely not what I expected, but still really cool. We built terrariums out of old empty water bottles, dirt, moss, and charcoal (I planted corn seeds in mine, and they STILL haven't sprouted!) and water filters out of pebbles, charcoal, sand, and filter paper (the first few times you run the water through it, it just gets dirtier). Next, we're going to make ethanol, which should be exciting. We're also working on a term-long project of designing a "sustainable" house/city.

Coming soon: blogs about my other classes (AP French, AP Physics, AP Calculus, IB Art, and English) perhaps?

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