Pick of the Week: Animal Cell Cross-Section Model

Nucleus, nucleolus, cytoplasm, centriole …

cell model

Nucleus, nucleolus, cytoplasm, centriole … those words are a mouthful, and explaining their individual functions is one of the great challenges of teaching biology. Our Pick of the Week lends a hand.

Animal Cell Cross-Section Model

Why we love it: This soft foam cell model splits in half to reveal the key components of an animal cell. Vacuole, cell membrane, Golgi body … the gang’s all here and will assist visual learners in remembering and understanding the animal cell parts and their functions.

Two halves, two ways to learn: One hemisphere is labeled with cell parts, the other side features only letters next to each cell part, making it a great tool for students to practice and self-quiz.

Ideas to try:

  • Help students to remember the functions of each part of the cell by having them assign each animal cell part a “job description.” Which part of the cell is the CEO? Which part is the staff cook? Which part is the head of transportation?
  • Give each student a large ziplock bag and have them fill it with items from home (string, marbles, Rainbow Loom bands, etc.) that represent the animal cell components. Have each student present to the class his or her “cell,” ticking off the items listed in the cross-section model.
  • When your students study plant cells, provide them with Styrofoam balls cut in half and have them create their own cross-section models using the animal-cell cross section as a guide.

Find it:

What is your best classroom learning tool or resource? Share in the comments and we just may feature it as a future Pick of the Week!

Posted by Jessica McFadden

Jessica McFadden is a writer, blogger and parent living in the Washington, DC suburbs. A daughter of a teacher and a member of a family of teachers, she is happily at home interviewing teachers, principals and education specialists.

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