Biology, The Science of Life

Structure of the Eukaryotic Cell

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Overview: Today’s lecture will be focused on understanding the inner life of a eukaryotic cell. More specifically, students will gain a basic understanding of the compartments inside the cell and the instructor will use the picture above to guide the lecture. Also, a non-narrated summary video will be presented at the end to provide a visual animation of what the inside of the cell resembles. The instructor will narrate the video. Moreover, the instructor will be lecturing for the whole duration of the class in an authoritative fashion and a crossword will be handed out at the end of the lecture.

Materials: The teacher will need the class computer, screen, and projector to present the image above in front of the class for approximately 40 minutes and the video at the end. The instructor may also use the white board to further emphasize the important concepts of the topic. Students will need paper, pen or pencil, or their laptops to take down notes.

Assessment: A take-home crossword will be distributed at the end of class for a total worth of 2% of the final grade (available above for download). The crossword provides questions similar to the exam presented at the end of the 10 lectures therefore it is a great practice and review tool. Crosswords are chosen as the method of assessment for these authoritarian lectures because they turn a 50 min lecture into an interactive game. A lot of material is covered in lessons set-up like this one and a crossword is more amusing to complete than a simple questionnaire; it provides clues and to a certain level, a confirmation of your answer. It also covers the material in as much detail as any questionnaire.

Extra Notes: There is no Power Point presentation for this class therefore students must be very attentive and take down notes.

  • Explain course material (40 minutes)
  • Present summary video (10 minutes)

Open the picture presented above and begin explaining the lecture material using the picture as a guide.

Flagellum: locomotion organelle present in some animal cells; composed of cluster of microtubules within an extension of the plasma membrane.

Centrosome: Region where the cell’s microtubules are initiated; contains a pair of centrioles

Cytoskeleton: reinforces cell’s shape, functions in cell movement; components are made of proteins. Includes: microfilaments, intermediate filaments, microtubules.

Microvilli: Projections that increase the cell’s surface area.

Peroxisome: organelle with various specialized metabolic functions; produces hydrogen peroxide as a by-product, then converts it to water.

Mitochondrion: organelle where cellular respiration occurs and most ATP is produced (lesson 07).

Lysosome: digestive organelle where macromolecules are hydrolyzed.

Golgi apparatus: organelle active in synthesis, modification, sorting, and secretion of cell products.

Ribosomes: complexes that make proteins; free in cytosol or bound to rough ER or nuclear envelope.

Plasma membrane: membrane enclosing the cell.

Endoplasmic reticulum (ER): network of membranous sacs and tubes; active in membrane synthesis and other synthetic and metabolic processes; has rough (ribosome-studded) and smooth regions. Has rough and smooth ER.

Nucleus: Nuclear envelope – double membrane enclosing the nucleus; perforated by pores; continuous with ER. Nucleolus – structure involved in production of ribosomes; a nucleus has one or more nucleoli. Chromatin – material consisting of DNA and proteins; visible as individual chromosomes in a dividing cell.

Once the lecture material has been covered, present the summary video. Since the video is not narrated, the instructor must narrate the video as it progresses and explain to the students what they are seeing. Pausing the video may be necessary to emphasize certain compartments. Hand-out the crossword at the end of class. If there is time remaining, allow the students to start the crossword in groups.