A Teacher's Day

The day in the life of an inner city large urban school district teacher after the high stakes testing ends and there is still three more months left before summer vacation.

Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

I have taught school for over thirty years always in the inner city and for the most part always upper grade students. I have two children and I have been married for twenty years.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Stem Cell Research

Awhile back, my class began work on stem cell research. (I wrote about it briefly in a previous blog. We used the article by Jon Entine and Sally Satel, "Race Belongs in the Stem Cell Debate," Washington Post.) Below are essays my students wrote about stem cells, what they are, what they are good for, etc. One fallout of the unit was my classes’ feelings about the present laws and stem cell lines allowed by these laws. In discussion, they used the laws and President Bush's veto of any changes in the laws to show--or prove, if you lean that way--that the Bush administration is racist. (Except for one girl--I placed her brief essay in this space because she is the same girl with the cursing problem. This might give you some insight into who she is. I'm calling her ABC.)Because I cannot put full names of students on this blog, I've removed their names except for the girl I mentioned above.

By the way, I have tried my hardest to corret all of the misconceptions in these essays and others. (I mean, blaming the Statee of Iowa for the stem cell law is a little over the line--and I don't even know where he learned this.)

Room 211

Stem Cells

By doing this project, I learned new and interesting facts about stem cells. I learned that the future of stem cells will be able to develop many new treatments and cures for cancer. I also learned that stem cells come from umbilical cords and fetuses. There are only sixty-four stem cell lines that can be studied by scientists. Forty-nine are for a specific group of white people. The other fifteen are for Asians. These are the only lines scientists can study because President Bush did not approve the study of anymore than those sixty-four lines. I also learned that if I ever needed help and stem cells would be able to help me, I would not be able to get any kind of help because there are no lines being studied at this time for African-Americans.

Room 211

Stem Cells

What I learned from the stem cell project is that stem cell lines are being used at the present time to benefit whites and Asians. The law about stem cells is that politics get involved in science. Stem cell research is right now involved with white people from a small area in Washington DC and Asians from India and China.

What else I learned about the stem cells is that the people of the United States are trying to pass a law to make stem cells open for everyone. Stem cells can be used to repair injured or dying cells in your body. Because groups of people are different, stem cell lines have got to be made for each group, not just the white people in Iowa.

Stem cells can repair damaged cells like nerve cells or brain cells. Stem cells may be able to help cure types of cancer and even heart disease. Stem cell lines should be developed for everyone in every race.

Room 209
Stem Cells--Is the Present Stem Cell Law Fair?

Stem cell laws are fair because white people are better than African-Americans. White people have money to pay for the stem cell transplants. Stem cell laws are fair ands I agree with the law a hundred percent. The law is fair because what do you see on TV mostly is white people so they deserve more than African-Americans.

Room 209

Stem Cells

Stem Cells are special cells can change into another cell and heal it. For example, damaged nerve cells will heal when a stem cell line is introduced to it. Stem cells come from fetuses or umbilical cords. They are clones. I learned that in the human body muscles, nerves, skin, blood, and bones are all composed of special types of cells. The blood cells, for example, are adapted to absorbing nutrients and great amounts of oxygen from the lungs and stomach. Stem cells can heal damaged blood cells when they are introduced into the cell system. Stem cells can heal nerve damage, brain cell damage, and other cells that specialize,

Room 209

Stem Cells--Is the Present Stem Cell Law Fair?

I think stem cells are used for healing damaged cells. I already know that stem cells can create entire new cells that are healthy, but stem cells cannot be given to African-Americans because each race has a different number of stem cell lines and our country does not include every race in the stem cell research. Stem cells can create new lines that can reproduce babies. The use of stem cells on certain people is illegal. Stem cells can be used to clone yourself, but this is illegal, too. I like the fact that you can heal damaged cells like cells in your ear that make you deaf.

Room 209

Stem Cells--Are the Stem Cell Laws Fair?

In my opinion, the stem cell is a special cell that can change into other kinds of cells. It can change an injured cell and heal it. For example, a damaged nerve cell will heal when a stem cell line is introduced into it, the stem cell will become the nerve cell and make the nerve cell healthy.

Stem cells come from fetuses or umbilical cords. They are a kind of clones.

Stem cell lines go with different groups. Whites have twenty lines, blacks have a hundred thirty, Hispanics have one hundred fifty, and Asians have fifty.

In my opinion, the stem cell law is not fair because only white people and some Asian people are allowed to use stem cell lines. No stem cell lines are developed for black people.

Room 209

Stem Cells

Things that I learned about the stem cells are that stem cells are special cells. They can change into another cell and heal the damaged cells. For example, a damaged cell can become healthier if a stem cell is introduced to it because the stem cell takes over the injured cell and become like that cell. A nerve cell is a special cell and a stem cell can turn into a nerve cell.

Stem cells come from fetuses--babies who were not born--and umbilical cords. The stem cell lines are cloned.

Stem cell lines come in different values. Whites have about seventy stem cell lines, blacks have about one hundred fifty, Hispanics have about one hundred fifty, and Asians have fifty stem cell lines.

The last thing I learned about stem cells is that stem cells can make your life better because if someone is handicapped or sick, then a stem cell can be injected into the injured specialized cell that is not working really well and it can heal the injured cell and make you better.

Room 209

Race Belongs to Stem Cell Debate

The article, Race Belongs to Stem Cell Debate" by Jon Entine and Sally Satel in the Washington Post, is about stem cell diversity. They say the problem lies in the lack of genetic and "racial" diversity of the sixty-four lines allowed to be used for research. The stem cell lines scientists can study do not include any lines for African-Americans. Of the sixty-four stem cell lines, forty-nine are from white people and the other fifteen are from Asians. These lines were harvested from a rich suburb of white people from Washington D.C. or from Singapore and India. Even if humans are ninety-nine percent the same, there is enough of a difference so that every race has its own special stem cell lines. It isn't fair that African-Americans are left out of the stem cell research. Many scientists are afraid to discuss the race issue in the stem cell debate. African-Americans and Hispanics lose out. After reading the article, I feel the stem cell law is not fair.


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