In this activity, you will be introduced to the applications of bacteria classification by differentiating bacteria based on the characteristics you observe throughout the Activity Object.
After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:
A classification system is used to group all living things according to similarities into one of six kingdoms. Bacteria are microscopic living things that have their own kingdom.
Microbiology is the study of microscopic living things. Bacteria are organisms that are unicellular and cannot be seen without a microscope. A microscope is a scientific instrument used to enlarge objects that the eye can not normally see. The similarities and differences of bacteria can be observed using a microscope or through incubation. An incubator speeds up the growth of bacteria. Testing bacteria requires a microscope and an incubator and can be done in a laboratory.
Bacteria can be classified according to various criteria. Classification criteria might include: shape, oxygen needs, nutrition type and Gram staining. Bacterial shapes include: spherical shaped (coccus), rod shaped (bacillus), spiral shaped (sprillum), and comma shaped (vibrio). Aerobic bacteria need oxygen to survive, while anaerobic bacteria do not. Facultative bacteria can live with, or without, oxygen. Heterotrophic bacteria cannot make their own food and need to get their nutrients from another source. Autotrophic bacteria can synthesize their food from sunlight or from other inorganic compounds. The most basic method to classify bacteria is the use of Gram staining. Some bacteria stain either red or purple depending on the thickness of the peptidoglycan layer of the cell wall. Gram negative bacteria generally stain red while Gram positive bacteria generally stain purple.
When people get sick, doctors may prescribe antibiotics if the illness is caused by bacteria. Antibiotics come with an insert that explains the kinds of bacteria the medication is effective against.
|Approximate Time||30 Minutes|
|Pre-requisite Concepts||Students should be able to define the concept of classification, list kingdoms in classification, and explain the structure and function of bacteria.|
|Type of Tutorial||Concept Development|
|Key Vocabulary||aerobes, aerobic bacteria, anaerobes|