MICROSCOPES IN THE CLASSROOM
1 University of Deusto (SPAIN)
2 DeustoTech (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Conference name: 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2017
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:Robert Hooke and Anthonie van Leeuwenhoek were microscopy pioneers who were thrilled by the new world they were unveiling with their observations. Hooke published a book called Micrographia in 1665, where he drew microscopic specimens with great detail. Inspired by Micrographia, Leeuwenhoek observed and described many microorganisms with microscopes that he designed and built himself. Can the microscope be a valuable learning resource in the science class? Could we create in our students some of the awe and amazement that the microscopy pioneers had? In this paper, we propose to use microscopes in the science class as a motivating and learning tool. The potential of these devices is described, and the characteristics of both stereo and compound microscopes are explained. The description of compound microscopes includes the enumeration of its main parts, the role they play in the working of the device, and some notes on how to handle and operate compound microscopes. Correct illumination is critical for getting good quality images, so a method called Köhler illumination is described. Teachers who might be willing to incorporate microscopes to their science classes are often troubled with problems such as insufficient budget or lack of experience. We describe initiatives to promote the educational use of microscopes that offer microscope loans at no cost and help interested but inexperienced teachers, so that some of the above problems can be alleviated. Finally, a few examples of the use of microscopes in classes of different levels (primary school, secondary school a college) are given. The authors evaluate both traditional and digital microscopy and the results are very encouraging, suggesting that microscopes are a valuable learning resource in the science class.
Keywords: Microscopy in the class, science class resources.