Diffusion In Agar Cubes

3cmx2.5cmx2.5cm cube         1cmx1cmx1cm               Cube


Hypothesis :   The Lesser volume there is , the more efficient diffusion can be. Meaning a smaller cube will undergo diffusion quicker and more thoroughly than a larger cube


Data Table :



1)In terms of maximizing diffusion, what was the most effective size cube that you tested?

1- in terms of maximizing diffusion , my group and I found the 1 cm cube to be the most efficient and effective .

2-Why was that size most effective at maximizing diffusion? What are the important factors that affect how materials diffuse into cells or tissues?


The 1 cm cube was found to be the mos effective since it had a lesser volume than the rest of the cubes. We found out the smaller the cube is ( in terms of its volume) the more efficient it would be at diffusion since there is less volume and space to cover meaning the whole process would be faster . You can notice our 1 cm cube to be more pink and have a deeper contrast of the 3 cubes.


3-If a large surface area is helpful to cells, why do cells not grow to be very large?


The surface area to the volume ration gets smaller as the cells gets larger . Thus , if the cell grows beyond a certain limit , not enough material would be able to cross the membrane fast enough to accommodate the increased cellular volume.


4-You have three cubes, A, B, and C. They have surface to volume ratios of 3:1, 5:2, and 4:1 respectively. Which one of these cubes is going to be the most effective at maximizing diffusion, how do you know this?


The cube that will be the most efficient at maximizing diffusion will be the cube that has a higher surface area to volume ratio of 4:1 because it has a higher surface area to volume ratio so it is more efficient. Having a higher surface area to volume ratio will ensure the inside of the cube will be the most effective at maximizing diffusion


5-  How does your body adapt surface area-to-volume ratios to help exchange gases?


Our bodies have adapted to have larger organs which are made up of small spheres which cover as much surface area as possible in order to more  efficiently exchange gases . Our body has a job of making sure a good surface area to volume area is established in areas where the gas exchange occurs. In order to accomplish this , large animals such as humans need special respiratory organs such as lungs for taking in oxygen and removing carbon dioxide.


6-  Why can’t certain cells, like bacteria, get to be the size of a small fish?


In order to maximize diffusion throughout cells , certain cells need to stay small for proper function, which means if a cell like bacteria was the size of a small fish , the surface area to volume ratio would be too small to ensure proposer and thorough diffusion throughout the cell


7-What are the advantages of large organisms being multicellular?


Multicellular organisms have many types of cells , while unicellular only have one cell. Multicellular organisms have specialized cells that engage in more complex physical and cognitive tasks than unicellular organisms .  Also , multicellular organisms have separate organ systems to perform special tasks . These systems , such as cardiovascular, digestive and respiratory systems perform life processes that are necesssary for survival .

DNA and Protein synthesis

1- how is mRNA different from DNA ?

– DNA is made up of deoxyribose sugar while mRNA is made up of ribose sugar.DNA has thymine as its pyrimindine base while mRNA has uracil as its pyrimidine base. DNA is present in the nucleus while mRNA diffuses into the cytoplasm after synthesis. DNA has 2 strands that are anti-parallel that intertwine to form a double helix while mRNA is short and single stranded. mRNA is short lived , while DNA has a long lifespan.


2- describe the process of transcription 

the process of transcription begins with a specific section of the DNA unwinding which exposes a set of bases. Along the sense strand of DNA complementary RNA bases are brought in. In RNA , uracil binds to adenine . While in DNA cytosine binds to guanine . In the other strand of DNA ( missense strand) is not read read in eukaryotic cells.Adjacent RNA nucleotides form sugar – phosphate bonds and then the RNA strand is released from DNA . After that the DNA molecule rewinds and returns to its double helix form. This process occurs in the nucleus and is facilitated by RNA polymerase which is depicted in the form of a fuzzy peach in the photo below . The photo shows the RNA polymerase copying a particular segment of DNA into RNA .after this is  all done the red RNA strand separates from the DNA strands .



 RNA is shown as the red strand 

fuzzy peach – RNA Polymerase 


3- how did today’s activity do a good job of modelling the process of RNA transcription? In what ways was our model inaccurate .

– The Pipe cleaner model is an excellent way to learn the steps of transcription because it is hands on and helps us better understand the process since we are building it ourselves . In addition to being hands on , the activity allows us to break down transcription into several steps and observe the process bit by bit and take our time to understand each step clearly. The different strand colours made it easier to distinguish between DNA and RNA and gave me a better understanding of the entire process rather than just reading the lesson of a board. The beads make the bases visually appealing and easier to distinguish , especially between single or double ringed bases.On the other hand , some discrepancies lie within this lab. For starters , the process of transcription is continuous meaning it happens without any stops or breaks. Another innaccuracy is with the size of the strands . Normally the DNA strands are much longer than the RNA but as you can see of our picture the red strand is almost as long as the DNA strand which in reality is false since RNA is much shorter.




Translation Activity 

1-  describe the process of translation- initiation , elongation , and termination. ( photos illustrate the process in order)

– initiation: The process starts with the mRNA reading the start codon (AUG) and attaches to the R site of the ribosome . The AUG codon always initiates translation and codes for the amino acid : methionine . tRNA binds to the start codon of mRNA . The tRNA has a binding site of 3 bases called anticodons that are complementary to the mRNA codon. The  methionly-tRNA is in the P site of the ribosome . The A site next to it is available to the tRNA carrying the next Amino Acid.


– elongation :  more amino acids are added and connected together to form a polypeptide. A Peptide bond is formed between the new amino acid and the growing polypeptide chain. Then , the amino acid is removed from the first tRNA  ( bonds break).

The first tRNA that was in the P site is released , and the tRNA in the A site is moved over to the P site.

The ribosome moves over one codon along the mRNA . This movement shifts the second tRNA to the P site . The third tRNA with the third amino acid can move into the A site and bind with the next codon on mRNA.

the process repeats and the chain elongates .


termination :the elongation process repeats until the stop codon is reached. ( UAA , UAG , UGA)

the stop codons do not code for amino acids but act as signals to stop translation

A protein called release factor binds directly to the stop codon in the A site. This causes a water molecule to be added to the end of the polypeptide chain , and the chain then separates from the last tRNA.

The protein is complete now. The mRNA breaks down and the ribosome splits into large and small subunits .


The pictures below illustrate the three steps of translation : initiation, elongation , and termination .




2- how did today’s activity do a good job of modelling the process of translation? In what ways was it inaccurate?


The activity did a good job of modelling translation by breaking it down into several steps and showing each small step for us to fully grasp the concept of the A and P sites , tRNA anticodons , and how translation begins. the different paper figures and colours made the process visually easier to grasp and understand. The fact the activity was hands on made it more meaningful and easier to understand. On the other hand , it was not possible to show the 3 D components of the process as this process is usually happening continuously and at a steady pace. In the end , I believe this activity gave me a better understanding of translation and definitely helped when I went back and read the steps of translation. Since we worked hands on , I better understood the process and re reading the lesson helped reinforce my understanding p.




DNA and protein synthesis

DNA Structure questions :

  1. DNA  is made out of deoxyribose, phosphates and nitrogenous bases. DNA is a large polymer made out of nucleotide monomers and has 2 backbones.The structure of DNA consists of Two strands that intertwine to form a double helix and are anti-parallel.Meaning they are read in the opposite directions. If the first strand is read in the 3′ to 5′ direction that means the second strand will be read in the 5′ to 3′ direction. The Nucleotides ( A, C , G ,T)  join up and form hydrogen bonds between their complementary bases. Bonds with T , and C bonds with G , This is called complementary base pairing.


2. This activity helps model the DNA structure clearly because it gives us a better visual of the double helix structure. The fact that we are creating a 3D model allows us to better observe the complementary base pairing and better understand the concept behind the anti-parallel strands. The color-coded beads that symbolized nitrogen bases help us further our understanding of the purine/pyrimidine bases. Since the purine bases were always shown by 2 beads rather than 1. A possible change that can be implemented to improve this project would be to improve the modeling of the anti-parallel strands. instead of beads that may slip off or move out of place, we could use a white pipe cleaner and color the sides to represent a sugar or phosphate instead of using beads.









  1. DNA replication occurs before a cell divides to ensure all the cell’s genetic information is copied before it can proceed to divide.


2. The first step in DNA replication is the unwinding of the double helix. DNA Helicase is responsible for the unwinding of the strand that leaves the nitrogen bases exposed and breaks the hydrogen bonds between them. The second step is Complementary Base pairing,  in which the nucleotides move into place and form H – bonds with their partner nucleotides on the strand. This process is done by DNA polymerase. The third and final step is the joining of adjacent nucleotides by forming sugar-phosphate bonds between them. The leading strand is continuous as the DNA unzips. Meanwhile, the lagging strand forms fragments as the DNA continues to unzip. DNA ligase proceeds to glue any of the fragments that are present. The reason why the process is different for the lagging strand is because of the fragments that form because it is read much slower than the leading strand.



3. For the complementary base pairing, we used candy to model the DNA polymerase, similarly with the Joining of adjacent nucleotides we also used candy to model the DNA Ligase.




poetry pairing project



The Endeavour. Publicity images supplied from Bill Richards & scanned for PR purposes. *** Local Caption *** Scan – from 35mm transparency

What is hope ?

Hope is a fresh start at life

Hope is the sun as we journey towards it

Hope is a breath of fresh air

after being submerged Underwater

Hope helps navigate us through life’s murky waters


what is hope ?

It is  the thing that lifts us up

when we are down

hope provides us with wings to fly

when we can not fly on our own

hope is the compass of our dreams

when lost in the darkness




For my poetry pairing project, I chose Finding Hope by Pat. A Fleming. The poem illustrates the poet’s neat perspective on his life and how he found hope. The poet envisions himself not living his life to the fullest, being too scared to achieve what his potential enables him to do. In the beginning, the author reminisces his times of past with a tone of melancholy and regret, which further adds to the suspense of him finding hope in the end.He ends off with: “So the time has now come to conquer my fears And to stand up and face a new day. Let the hurts of my past wash away with my tears
And stop letting my life slip away. I found the ending to be very powerful and eye-opening because it showed me that no matter what life throws out you people still have the strength, resilience, and perseverance to come out on top.T he imagery and manipulation of language used make it easy for the reader to relate to the struggles of the poet and in turn, allow for better interpretation of the poem. For my image, i chose a picture of a ship out at sea, by itself. I believe the simple picture of a lone ship represents how people are without hope , and that is lost. Without hope, we humans are lost.

Desmos Art Functions card 2018


I managed to underestimate how long this task this would take, not because of how difficult it was, but the fact that it was so time-consuming. Since I am not very familiar with using Desmos besides graphing equations it took a little bit of time to get accustomed to using the website itself. I started off with a pencil and a paper, trying to sketch what I wanted to replicate on Desmos later on. Once I got an idea of how I wanted it to look like, I began experimenting with what kinds of equations would be easy to manipulate and which equations would be more difficult to apply.


I found the sine equations easier to manipulate than the rest. I used it to make my hairline, the letter M, R, my nose, and lips. The most challenging equation to implement in my opinion was exponential, I was somewhat stuck on how to use it but ended up adding it in a form of decoration to my Christmas tree. Radical equations came in handy when I was sketching my eyebrows, I found out that their perfect curve made a good fit to add for the eyebrows. The rational equations helped me produce the decoration on the Christmas tree.  What I found great about Desmos is that it pinpoints the exact point on the graph so it makes it easier for myself to set the domain and range restrictions. The domain and range restriction manipulation was an important factor in making sure the dimensions of the portrait and decorations do not exceed their space and intervene with other parts of the graph.


I got stuck on several occasions, especially when it came to implementing log and exponential functions. In the beginning, I asked a few friends who also turned out to be stuck, and then I went back and looked at our notes and got a clearer vision of how and where to use them. I mostly used log functions when creating the face on my holiday card. The only strategy that helped me was sketching it on paper and graphing each part of the face , tree and letters part by part to get a better understanding of the transformations of the relations.


Overall, as time-consuming as this assignment was I think it has enriched my understanding of the six functions and how to better manipulate them using translations, stretches, reflections, and domain/range restrictions. I believe this assignment has come in handy especially since we have a final up and coming soon.

LINK : https://www.desmos.com/calculator/taranhgkb7




South African Storm and Gandalf.

The Infinitesimal 

Some believe you need to be in a position of power to enact change, however, in most cases, it turns out to be the total opposite. Your actions speak volume and will continue to remain more powerful than you will ever be. So the question remains, do we have to appeal to the powers that be to enact change or can change be started from the bottom of the pyramid?. Gandalf’s quote reinforces Allison’s thesis on how change can be made by the small everyday deeds by everyday people. Howard mentions how walking through the rain is her infinitesimal deed to catapult the wheel of change, and this, in turn, goes hand in hand with what Gandalf is saying. To answer my question, yes change can begin from the grassroots of society. For instance, during the Vietnam war, there were a small group of people boycotting the war In the begging. As it grew costlier and deadlier more people were becoming aware, choosing the course of change and taking action. Another issue where our small contributions make a difference is the environment. Over the course of the past decade, people have become more aware of the devastating effects of climate change. Environmental awareness has spread throughout the world with simple infinitesimal changes that contribute to saving the planet. Overall, the entirety of the world’s social, environmental, and political movements not only prove Howard’s and Gandalf’s thesis but also strengthens it and proves it to be universal.



What is overpopulation? Surely, we now know what overpopulation means.Overpopulation is the condition of being populated with excessively large numbers, more numbers than our resources can sustain. The article I read provided very insightful information as to why we should worry about overpopulation, but above all what frightened me the most was the fact that If our population does not stop growing , we are at risk of famine , war , and poverty. According to the Malthusian theory of population , it states that human populations grow exponentially while food productions grow at an arithmetic rate. This scenario of arithmetic food growth with simultaneous geometric human population growth predicted a future when humans would have no resources to survive on.  To avoid such a catastrophe, Malthus urged controls on population growth. The article addresses issues such as carrying capacity and food security around the world. What got me hooked to this article was its message on quality of life versus quantity of life. The writer specifically urges us to change our ways or to suffer the consequences of our irresponsible choices along with the fact that the planet’s carrying capacity will soon reach its maximum at our rate of waste and consumption. Reading this article reminded me of Malthus’s book An essay on the principle of population , because  both literary pieces carry the same message regarding population sustainability. Reading this marvelous piece has got me to think on how I , personally can change my ways to improve our planet.






Roid Rage


Athletes have long been looking for ways to better themselves; whether it be by training more, eating better, or recovering more. In business and politics, shortcuts are encouraged by many and are applauded by the public; but when shortcuts are discussed in competitive sporting ,the debate tends to  get a little more heated. The use of steroids has long been public knowledge and it is not ground-breaking news to us anymore. anabolic steroids are made in laboratories and have the same chemical structure as the steroids found in the male sex hormone testosterone. The muscle-building (anabolic) and masculinizing (androgenic) effects of these drugs make them appealing to athletes and bodybuilders. So the question that bogs us all is, are they ethical ? To some the answer may simply be “No, they are not. They give athletes an unfair advantage” this does not seem to be the case for Raymmar Triado , the author of Is It Time To Say Yes To Steroids In Professional Sports? He puts forward a compelling argument in favor of their use by explaining that they are not like magic potions. Triado uses figurative language , irony , and even includes parallelism in his articles. His argument is that why do steroids need to be band in an era where the athletes are trying to better themselves in their respective fields of sport. Triado reveals that we all use things that make us feel better such as: coffee, Adderall , and cigarettes. The Author emphasizes the fact that if we can use prescriptions and legal drugs ( coffee ) to make ourselves feel and operate on a much higher level then athletes are not to be an exception. Steroids are and will remain to be a center of controversy and an endlessly debated topic. Whether It is ethical or not , that remains up to the user themselves.