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With the help of some students, science presenter Jon Chase investigates the growth of bacteria on agar plates. The students swab some of their personal possessions, including earrings and mobile phones, and then spread the bacteria onto the surface of agar plates. These are grown in an incubator and the results seen. Some detail of the types of bacteria and how they grow (binary fission) is given.
Students could make models of bacterial cells out of balloons, shoe boxes etc. They could label the parts of cells and include relevant functions. After watching the clip students could repeat the activity seen, by swabbing and culturing their own samples. (An appropriate risk assessment must be completed.) A follow up activity could involve investigating which antibiotics and/or antiseptics have the greatest effect upon cultured bacteria.
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