Achoo! Pollen Does More than Make Us Sneeze

Harness the power of a scanning electron microscope to let students see that pollen is more than just the yellow dust that makes us sneeze sometimes! Students will watch an introductory video to learn basics of pollen biology. They will then learn to use scale bars to interpret size on microscope images, thus meeting math as well as science standards. They will use that knowledge to extract the sizes of pollen grains from scanning electron microscope images, and see the wide range of pollen shapes and sizes. They will also learn to make inferences about allergic potential and modes of dispersal of different kinds of pollen. After those class activities, student really engage by collecting their own pollen samples and sending them to our lab where we will take images of them with the scanning electron microscope. We will send you the images and interact with the students (video/Skype/person) to answer questions and analyze their own pollen images.

Lesson Plan
Teacher Guide
Student Worksheets
Pollen SEM Images