Our Eyes are Amazing!

In today’s lesson we experimented (safely!) on our own eyes! We did activities to help us understand the jobs of some different parts of the eye: the iris regulates the amount of light that enters the eye, the lens focuses images, and the rod cells and cone cells in our retinas detect images. We learned that rod cells can register very small signals, and are important for our peripheral vision and our night vision, and cone cells allow us to see color and perceive fine details. We also learned about the arrangement of the rod cells and cone cells in the retina, and how our optic nerve (that has the very important job of carrying visual signals to our brains) gives us one “blind spot” in each eye. Even though we don’t notice this blind spot normally, we could find it in class! Ask your student how to find yours!

Estructura del Ojo humano

En la clase de hoy experimentamos (de manera segura), ¡con nuestros ojos! Realizamos una serie de actividades que nos permitieron entender el trabajo que realiza cada una de las diferentes partes de estos. El iris regula la cantidad de luz que entra a nuestro ojo, el lente enfoca las imágenes, las células de la retina, llamadas conos y bastones, son las que captan la luz. Aprendimos que los “bastones” pueden detectar niveles de luz muy leves y que son importantes para nuestra visión periférica y nocturna. En cambio los conos, nos permiten ver en color y percibir detalles. También aprendimos cómo se distribuyen los conos y los bastones en la retina, y cómo es que el nervio óptico (el cual transporta las señales visuales a nuestro cerebro) es el responsable del “punto ciego” en cada ojo. A pesar de que no nos damos cuenta de este “punto ciego”, lo pudimos experimentar en clases. Pregúntele a su hijo o hija cómo puede encontrar su punto ciego.

 

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Author

Dr. Catherine Sukow

Dr. Sukow's interest in science education began when she was a teenager, with an extended visit to San Francisco's Exploratorium. In college, she had summer jobs in a similar, smaller, museum. She focused her Master's research at NCSU on the structure of metal silicides on silicon, and her Ph. D. work at Brandeis on the structure of crossbridged actin bundles. While volunteering in her childrens' schools, she was reminded how much fun it is to teach science, and is happy to be teaching now with Science from Scientists. In her spare time, she also enjoys yoga, choral and solo singing, and attempting a variety of international cuisines.

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