Name _ Date _ Class _
Biology Cellular Transport
Active Reading in Biology
Some of you may be finding that reading in Biology is not an easy task. The purpose of this activity is to provide you with strategies to make your reading more effective. You may already use some of these strategies. For this assignment, you need to try each of these and reflect on which strategy seems to help you the most.

Step 1:
Turn to page 4 in your text, Section 1.1 Introduction to Biology (Using the book online is okay, but please hide all other open applications.)

Step 2:
Please follow the instructions for each of these strategies. I’ve outline sections in the reading that you should use for each strategy.

  1. Before you start, ask yourself pre-reading questions. For instance: What is the topic, and what do you already know about it? Write your question here.




  1. Read the text on page 4. Summarize those paragraphs on The Science of Life in two sentences or less below.




  1. Read the next section on pg 5-6, “What do biologists do?” Write your own exam question based on the reading in those paragraphs.





  1. Read the next two paragraphs on pg 6 under “The Characteristics of Life.” Then, define any unfamiliar terms from these paragraphs in your own words.






  1. Have you noticed any ways your textbook is trying help you with understanding in the reading so far? What are those? Are you using them?


  1. Read about the Life Characteristics on pg 6-10. Make a flow chart, diagram, or graphic organizer that helps you visually to map and understand those ideas.

















Turn to page 11 in your text, Section 1.2 The Nature of Science
  1. Read “MAIN idea” and “Real World Reading Link.” What is the main idea of the section in your own words?





  1. Read the first paragraph under “What is Science” on pg 11. Ask yourself, what does this remind you of?








  1. Read “Relies on evidence” and “Expands scientific knowledge” on pg 11-12. Write 2 questions you have about this section. Answer the questions using the figures in the book and other resources.




  1. Read “Challenges Accepted Theories,” “ Questions results,” “Tests claims,” “Undergoes Peer Review,” and “Uses Metric System” on pg 13-14. Infer a connection for all of the characteristics.







  1. Read “Science in Everyday Life”. Ask yourself, “What scientific issue have I encountered with an ethical dilemma?”







  1. From the entire reading, teach what you have learned to someone else! This is one of the most effective ways to learn. If you try to explain aloud what you have been studying: 1) you’ll transfer the information from short-term to long-term memory and 2) you’ll really know what you understand and what you don’t.








  1. Read the Section summary on pg 15. Are there concepts there that you need to review? If so, go back to the reading to find them and re-read.



  1. Reflect back to these strategies on Active Reading. Which did you think was most effective for you? Which would you use most often in the future?





I’m attaching a list of strategies for you here. Some apply better to reading in science than others. These came from Princeton’s Resources for Learning[1].

Active Reading Strategies

Choose the strategies that work best for you or that best suit your purpose.
You do not need to use them all every time you read.

  • Ask yourself pre-reading questions.
    • For instance: What is the topic, and what do you already know about it?

  • Define any unfamiliar terms.

  • Bracket the main idea of the reading, and put an asterisk next to it.
    • You will read the introduction or first paragraph carefully to find this information.

  • Put down your highlighter. Make margin notes or comments.
    • Every time you feel the urge to highlight something, write instead. You can summarize thetext, ask questions, give assent, protest vehemently. Have a dialogue with the author. You can also write down key words to help you recall where important points are discussed.

  • Write questions in the margins. Answer the questions in a reading journal or on a separate piece of paper.
    • If it is a textbook, try changing all the titles, subtitles, sections and paragraph headings into questions. For example, the section heading “The Gas Laws of Boyle, Charles, and Avogadro” might become “What are the gas laws of Boyle, Charles, and Avogadro?

  • Make outlines, flow charts, or diagrams that help you visually to map and understand ideas.

  • Read each paragraph carefully and then determine “what it says” and “what it does.” Write your comments in the margin.
    • Answer “what it says” in only one sentence. Represent the main idea of the paragraph in your own words. To answer “what it does,” describe the paragraph’s purpose within the text: for example, “provides evidence for the author’s first main reason” or “summarizes an opposing view.”

  • Write your own exam question based on the reading.

  • Teach what you have learned to someone else!
    • This is one of the most effective ways to learn. If you try to explain aloud what you have been studying: 1) you’ll transfer the information from short-term to long-term memory and 2) you’ll really know what you understand and what you don’t.

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[1] (http://web.princeton.edu/sites/mcgraw/active_reading_strategies.html)