Fall Conference September 22, 2007

Mark your calendars for the Fall KABT meeting at Kill Creek Timber Ridge Adventure Center near Desoto, KS. The event will feature some of the newest lessons Kansas biology teachers will be using this year in their classrooms. Registration will begin at 8:00am and sessions begin at 8:45. Presenters will be asked to share twice if the group attendance is large enough to split. All attendees have the opportunity to actively participate in  every presentation.  The sessions will be 30 or 60 minutes in length and may include Advance Placement topics on enzymes, biotechnology topics of RNA interference or microarrays, and Kansas Natural history presentations. Lunch will be included in your registration fee.  Get ready to sign up as more details become available. I hope to get the plan put together this week.

Roaring River Picture Album

Randy’s Tent

Randy’s campsite at campground #3

Josie’s Tent

Josie’s Tent

Hatchery Tour 1

several members gather at the hatchery to take a tour of the rainbow trout facility ran by the Missouri Conservation Commission


Josie and Harry “model” excellent student behavior .


Trout in the cave at the spring source.


Looking up to the clift above you can see the fault line that is responsible for the spring.


Josie stands in front of the building constructed by the CCC of the 1930’s


Fingerling trout


Tiffany and Daughter viewing preserved sac-fry.


Harry takes a magnifyed look at the sac-fry


Josie feeding the big trout in the spring pond.


This is at least a ten pound trout.


Tim the park naturalist organizes the stream walk.


There must be something pretty interesting in the water.




Biotechnology Workshop June 8 or 15

Dates:June 8 or June 15

Time: 9 AM to 4 PM

Location: SCI 113 on JCCC campus

Johnson County Community College would like to invite you to a Biotechnology workshop. The college is located in Overland Park , Kansas. A stipend will be provided to all teachers, counselors and administrators that attend. AM session: Is a hands-on workshop that introduces biotechnology laboratory skills using DNA and Forensic Science experiments. PM session: a presentation and discussion about the JCCC Biotechnology program that will include information about courses offered (on-campus and online) and current Biotechnology programs in area schools.

Please RSVP to lwolfgra@jccc.edu by May 31st with the names of the people from your school that will attend and your preferred date for the workshop

Authentic Science Activity

Click here to download a pdf of the Worm Lab Directions

Dorsal Blood Vessel

Key terms: toxicity, pulse rate, blood circulation, Phylum Annelida, Class Oligochaeta, freshwater invertebrate

a model for students to conduct real experiments that they design based on a simple “model organism”known as black worms. With very little effort it is possible to provide students

The student will be able to observe and record the pulse rate of Lumbriculus variegatus ( an aquatic segmented worm).

The student will design and carry out an experiment showing the effect of various substances on the pulse rate of Lumbriculus variegatus.

Follow the link to an Adobe PDF copy of this lab developed by Randy Dix and the American Physiology Society. Additional teaching resources at my site.


These worms were made famous by the late Charlie Drewes and many of the techniques are of his design. His website is an invaluable resource and many thanks go to those that maintain and support his teachings. http://www.eeob.iastate.edu/faculty/DrewesC/htdocs/ Continue reading “Authentic Science Activity”

Greetings from Randy,KABT President

Message from the president


“This could be the most important message of your Life.  You could be a million dollar winner.”  Newspapers, pop-ups, and e-mails make promises that few people  pay attention to but those few people keep the message senders in business. The business of biology education requires a few talented teachers to achieve the goal of scientific literacy for Kansas and the United States.  I hope that this message can be relevant to a broad range of individuals that embrace the common goal of scientific literacy.  I hope to speak to the veteran KABT member that has been a force in the classroom and community; to the early educator that is beginning to make their mark; to the pre-service educator; and to all University and local administrators that embrace biology education as essential to scientific literacy.

KABT as an organization is at a crossroad.  We will evolve as an organization to survive in the 21st Century environment or face extinction as dinosaurs of biology classroom.  As newly elected President I feel like the beginning teacher facing their first day with students.  High on expectations, low on reality, and lacking the tools to accomplish even the simplest of goals.  None the less, my idealistic nature sees hope for the future and the hope that I can make a difference.  I am proposing a gathering of ideas and talents that will make membership in KABT a must have resource for success in the classroom. As an organization we can not be content to lead those that are already on the same path but seek out those that are not members of KABT.  We must get out the message that KABT is an organization that is read to support all teachers of biology at all levels and in all ways.

            Key to this goal is the way in which we as an association communicate with members , prospective members and the public. Communication goals should be clearly defined to provide a value for membership and those in the community that support the goal of scientific literacy. We have many tools that are currently available and need only to be sharpened to a razor’s edge for maximum effect. The KABT web site is available for listing calendar events, lesson ideas, and contact information. What else can this site be used for?  Blogs, video, pod casts, picture albums, are currently hot commodities in other venues. The key is flexibility to become what the membership desires. Our newsletter has long been a staple in the association’s attempt to communicate yearly activities.  What improvements could be made in order to reach more members?  Is communication between regional representatives and members better served through mass email lists?  Could this become an effective way to provide value for a KABT membership?

            I wish that all readers of this message could be million dollar winners.  I hope that every teacher can someday feel as rich as I did when I received the thank you note from a former student.  It acknowledged the important role of her high school teachers and courses that prepared her for college.  She expressed that it was upon her high school experiences that she began a journey which is now entering a UC  Berkeley doctoral program.

Best Wishes,

Randy Dix ,KABT President