Biological Demonstrations

"Garage Demos:" Physical models of Biological Processes


2010-2011 marks our sixth year creating large-scale demonstrations for introductory biology lectures. As you can see from the photo to the left, students in the back need the demonstrations to be physically large in order to see them. These are called "Garage Demos" because we make them from standard materials found in our garages. Short videos of the demonstrations done in class are posted on YouTube for students to re-view. 


We found the demonstrations helpful not only for teaching but also for increasing the creator's understanding of the processes modeled. Therefore we have begun generating resources to encourage faculty, graduate student TAs, and undergraduates to create and use physical materials to teach and learn basic concepts in biology with links posted below.



Introductory Biology Demonstrations on YouTube (with Instructions for Faculty):


Demonstrations by Faculty at other Universities



Introductory Biology Demonstrations on YouTube (no Faculty Instructions)




In addition to creating demonstrations for our own lectures, we have worked on these demonstration projects:






Instructor Video:


YouTube link for students




Blood Types

Instructor video:




Oxidative Phosphorylation

Our first version of this demo was just NAD+ as shown in the YouTube here:




This has now become a full-fledged oxidative phosphorylation demonstration, as shown in this Instructor video:


Intracellular transport

Extended video for instructors:


ouTube link for students




Conduction pathway of the heart

Extended video for instructors:




Blood buffers

Extended video for instructors:


YouTube link for students



Protein Degradation

Extended video for instructors:


YouTube link for students




Actin-Myosin Crossbridge Cycling

Extended video for instructors:



Chromosome Replication and Division

Extended video for instructors:


YouTube link for students




Plasmids, Restriction Enzymes and Cloning

Extended video for instructors:


YouTube link for students





Membrane fluidity: Pop toob hydrocarbon tails :YouTube link for students


Sickle cell anemia: Rubber band RBC: YouTube link for students

Bound vs free ribosomes: Flower pot ribosome: YouTube link for students

Pseudopodia: Meshball WBC: YouTube link for students