We started looking at cells earlier this year and the kids created a visual representation of an animal cell and a plant cell using kitchen items like a plastic container, frozen peas and frozen corn. It was a great activity. (We used this idea from BBC and just made a few adjustments).
We have been building on our cell knowledge ever since then, slowly and with a lot of repetition because I consider this section of biology as being one of those foundation stones of the subject. I wanted to make sure my daughter really understands it. And I must admit I searched quite a bit online for cell related pages to use with her but I was never totally happy, so I turned to one of our favourite secondary resources – Oaka Books. They actually have two topic packs for this section a part 1 and a part 2 (but for this post we are focusing on Part 1).
So what does the Cells & Organisation Part 1 Topic Pack cover?
- Cell Structure (my daughter REALLY likes the way this has been set out and explained she says some of the other resources that she has read did not explain the different parts as clearly).
- Different features of cells and how they have adapted and specialised
- Diffusion in the cells
- Unicellular and Multicellular
- Fertilisation of Cells
- Examining cells (I really liked that they included this)
After we started using this topic pack my kids had another go at creating both plant and animal cells – this time using playdough. And my youngest even used the playdough to explain the different parts of a cell and its functions to me. (He is also a huge fan of the Oaka topic packs – in fact he often reads the KS3 topic booklets I get for his sister.)
All Topic Booklets include a Glossary page but I am finding with the KS3 Science packs that I really appreciate the Glossary page. It is proving handy for both myself and my daughter. My daughter actually commented that she would like to stick the Glossary page up on her notice board (like a poster) so we can refer to it whenever she needs to.
As with all Topic packs they include a Topic Booklet, a Write Your Own Notes and a Learning Game. This is standard for all Topic packs. The Write Your Own Notes are created to look like the Topic Booklets but with spaces for the kids to fill in key words. And I must admit we find the Write Your Own Notes really comes into its own with the KS3 Science packs. We are finding it more and more useful.
And finally as always the game is perfect. Just what you need to remind the kids about what they have learnt. (We always come back and play these games multiple times).
We are massive fans of the Oaka Books Topic Packs and this Cell pack does NOT disappoint.