Great “Hidden Life” (of homes and people) Learning Activity from the NY Times #microbiology

Hidden Life Forms: Investigating Microbial Diversity on Our Bodies and in Our Homes -
Image from NY Times article

Wow – this is really really cool: Hidden Life Forms: Investigating Microbial Diversity on Our Bodies and in Our Homes.  The article is by Jennifer Cutraro and it goes through a series of course / learning activities regarding microbial diversity – of homes and of people.  It has things like:

  • a warm up activity
  • a pre-activity quiz
  • suggested questions regarding “The Bugs in Our Homes” – a NY Times article from 2014 by Nancy Brill
  • suggested questions regarding Carl Zimmer’s very recent “The Great Indoors: The Next Frontier,” article.
  • a hands on microbial themed activity relating to the Belly Button Biodiversity project from Rob Dunn and colleagues
  • discussion questions about the human microbiome
  • suggestions for getting involved in a citizen microbiology project
  • and more

This is just completely awesome.  Thanks NY Times and Jennifer Cutraro

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Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. My lab is in the UC Davis Genome Center and I hold appointments in the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology in the School of Medicine and the Department of Evolution and Ecology in the College of Biological Sciences. My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis (see my lab site here which has more information on lab activities).  In addition to research, I am heavily involved in the Open Access publishing and Open Science movements.