How to Organize Your Lab for the Greatest Success
Over 80,000 teachers and over 500,000 students in high schools and colleges around the United States benefit from Modern Biology, Inc.’s comprehensive approach to lab preparation.
Modern Biology, Inc. designs individual biology experiments and electrophoresis packs not just to reinforce the learning of facts, but also to encourage scientific thinking. No laboratory exercise from Modern Biology, Inc. is a demonstration. Every experiment from Modern Biology, Inc. requires formulating and testing a hypothesis and recording results in a way that can be shared with other young scientists.
Modern Biology, Inc. packs all the reagents, test materials, controls, and experiment-specific labware needed for each laboratory learning exercise. We provide an instructor guide shaped by decades of feedback from educators just like you.
Modern Biology, Inc. provides everything biology teachers need for each lab exercise. We take care of ordering, inventory, and requisition issues, providing everything you need at a price your school can afford. But we do have some suggestions on how you can organize your lab for the best possible results with Modern Biology, Inc.
Organize your laboratory space with stations
The physical arrangement of the biology lab has a tremendous effect on how much students can do in the lab period they are assigned, and sometimes whether they can complete an experiment at all.
It is always a good idea, for instance, to set up a weigh station near the reagent supply. Place the analytical balance, scoops, and weighing boats next to the balance. Have the chemicals and media that need to be weighed on hand next to everything else. You can even mark areas on the lab bench with different colors of tape so every student knows where chemicals, scoops, weighing boats, and the balance should stay.
Collect your most-used supplies in bins
Clear bins optimize limited shelf space. They can hold objects of different sizes and shapes, organized by function. Because they are clear, everyone can see inside easily, and because they have sides, they keep loose objects from tumbling down to the workbench or the floor. Bins prevent laboratory messes!
It’s impossible to have too many labels!
Labels identify the contents of a container. They demarcate storage areas on the shelves. An inexpensive label maker is a good investment, so you and your students don’t have to interpret anyone’s handwriting. But a marker on colored tape works, too.
Use vertical space
Make sure you take advantage of the full height of your lab space. Use dead space under a bench or a table to store larger equipment and large boxes of supplies. Assuming you have sturdy equipment, stack it so it takes up a smaller footprint. Use hooks on the wall for storing lab coats.
Designate a space for additional supplies
Some small items in the laboratory have to be restocked frequently. Pipettes, alligator clips, culture flasks, electrophoresis gel, pipette tips, and a variety of standardized solutions all need to be placed in an easily accessible place at eye level. Designate a place for backup inventory so everyone knows where they can find “extras.”
Develop a laboratory inventory system
One of the great advantages of using complete laboratory kits from Modern Biology, Inc. is that ordering, inventory, requisitions, and reports are minimized. But no laboratory gets absolutely everything from even the most complete laboratory supplier, not even from Modern Biology, Inc. Develop a system that lets you know when you need to reorder and restock reagents and expendable laboratory equipment. Make sure this system keeps reagents and equipment from being lost.
Class sizes change from year to year. Class attendance varies from day to day. The best stocked labs are designed to accommodate changing needs without waste. Of course, the best way to make sure you can do this is to make Modern Biology, Inc. a fixed part of your biology curriculum.
Have questions? Modern Biology, Inc. has answers! Contact us weekdays at (765) 446-4220.