Welcome to Microbe World!
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Please answer these questions in complete, quality, & correct sentences that reflect the question itself. Use a separate sheet of paper and ink for each day's assignment. Please ensure your work is neatly done throughout.

A. How Big is a ….. ?

Go to Cells Alive.....and start the animation. Explore for a couple minutes, then answer the following questions.

1. Use the scale to tell about how much smaller Ragweed pollen is then a Dust Mite (its length).

2. Use the scale to tell about how much bigger an Ebola virus is then a rhinovirus.

3. Use the scale and estimate the diameter of one Staphylococcus bacteria (four are shown).

B . Microbe World ..... The Basics

Go to Microbe World

4. True or False (in a complete sentence, of course)

There are more people on Earth then microbes on your hand.

5. Tell what the term "microbe" means and tell the names of the five different types of microbes.

6a. Explain why there is some debate on whether viruses should be termed microbes.

6b. If a virus were the size of a baseball.... how big would a cell in your body be?

Break! There are all kinds of microbes inside of animals, including you! Look inside a Cow's stomach and see the variety of microbes within! So spend a couple 3 minutes looking at:

i. The Ruman symbionts.

ii. The Methane producer.

You can come back later if you are ahead. (Note: If you enlarge the images you will see more detail)

C. On to Archaea: Go to Archaea

7. Tell about the four major extreme types of Archaea and where they live.

Name of Subtype
Where lives







d1. (Two sub-subtypes)




8. Explain how Archaea's cell walls are different than Bacteria's.

9. Which is more closely related to humans, bacteria or archaea?

10. Tell at least 3 things Archaea eat.

Break! Did you know that Archaea were only discovered 30 years ago, even though there have been trillions under our nose all the time! Check out this short informative article for a couple minutes.

D. Onward to learn about...... Bacteria!

11. Explain what Bacteria eat.

Go to Classifying bacteria

12. Bacteria and Archaea are classified as Prokaryotes. Explain what prokaryotes are.

13. Tell the 3 shapes of bacteria. (read down to shape)

Hey, Check out a picture of one of the most famous bacterias of all.... E. Coli! Go to: ..... When done, go back to Microbe World!

14. How do some bacteria with flagellum stay in one place?

Break! Gosh, All of this talk about Bacteria! Lets take a break and seem and learn more about these critters go to Microbe Gallery and read more about each.

Slide the curser over the pictures to get more info about the organism.

E. Good Job! Now lets go to Fungi

Break! - See the intitial article on Microbe World about a humongous Honey Mushroom, the world's largest single organism. Check it out!

15. What is fungi's niche in the environment?

16. Describe how the cell walls of the fungi's hyphae are connected that is different from all the rest of the organisms.

Break! Small as it is, yeast is not the least of the microbes. It is incredibly important to humans! Take a quick look at a couple of these amazing fungi! .... Then go back to work!

17. Tell what fungi eat.

F. On to Protists

18. Tell the 4 subgroups of protists AND explain what eukaryotic means.

19. Algae are cool. These lil' plant cells provide most of the world's oxygen. Algae normally make energy in the form of sugar from sunlight. However, sometimes algae get energy and nutrients other ways.

Explain how the dinoflagellate Pfiesteria gets energy.

Break! Hey! Lets take a look at some nasty algae blooms just for fun! Check out these neat articles and learn about this ever growing problem to fish, shellfish, and humans.

The Growing Problem of Harmful Algae

Red Tides and Algae

20. Explain the three ways protozoans use to get food inside their bodies.

21. Do a "find" search on this website. Give the name and a general description of each of the four sub groups of protozoans


General description








Break! You've earned a break to see some way cool ciliated protists! Go to"The Ciliate Gallery"

22. What two things do members of the Family Sarcodina use their pseudopods for?

23. Describe how slime molds live differently in good times and in bad And how do these creatures know when to huddle?

Break! Wanna see some way cool pictures of slime molds? Check this out!

G. On to Viruses!

24. Explain what a virus is and describe what viruses are made of.

25. Tell how a virus gets into a host's cells and describe what the virus does once it is inside a host's cells.

26. What are viroids and on what type of cells are they found?

27. Explain the following

a. What causes Mad Cow and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease AND what happens to the brain when infected?

b. Describe what the infectious agents that cause Mad Cow and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease are made of.

Break! Check out some great graphics on viruses here!

H. Let's explore why microbes have such good Evolutionary Success

28. Tell the two reasons microbes are so successful in our world

Then watch this bacteria reproduction movie. Then continue reading below and answer these questions on Evolutionary Success.

29. Tell the two ways bacteria reproduce.

30. IF bacteria, fungi, and molds can reproduce so fast, why isn't the world taken over by these critters?

Let's learn how Microbes mutate

31. Tell the three general ways bacteria can mutate.

Where do microbes live?

32. Name at least three really strange places where microbes live.

Break! Are bacteria intelligent? Some researchers even have students to show that microbes can communicate. See this hot article!

I. Are Microbes our Friends or our Foes?

33. Tell the name of at least 3 "good" microbes AND explain what they do to help us.

(Hint! slide cursor over graphics and click to see information.)

34. You are almost done! See this great page telling the story about Bacteria in the Fossil Record.

34. Describe the oldest known bacteria on record AND tell how old these ancient fossils are.

J. Let's compare Viruses to Bacteria.

35. Tell two differences between viruses and bacteria.

36. Explain the main difference between bacteria and viruses.

37. Specifically describe how a T4 bacteriophage infects and reproduces in an E. coli bacterium.

K. Are you really washing your hands correctly?

38. Check this Don't get Caught Dirty Handed, then tell the results (for males and females) of the Handwashing Survey!

EC Opportunities. Must be done on a separate sheet of paper. Please use standard formats.

You can chose to do a write up (no copying please) of up to four links described below.

a. Write in detail about how any one of these Microbes do amazing feats

b. Do a short report (50 words or more) on any of the "Break!" links above on the topics below, or of your own choosing on bacteri:

Microbial Mergers:

Why is the war on Bacteria wrongheaded?

CDC reports: Deadly drug resistant Bacteria on the rise in US hospitals.

Is antibacterial soap any better than regular soap?

Are storm clouds alive with bacteria?

c. OR: You could do this experiment and describe

i. What you did.

ii. Your results

Warning BE SURE TO GET parent supervision!

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