Evolution of Spermatophytes

This creative speech was written for a “Kingdom Characters Project” from the perspective of seed plants or seed-bearing plants. Spermatophytes are plants that reproduce sexually, requires the fertilization of female and male gametes. Before the evolution of spermatophytes, plants reproduce through spores, sporophytes. Below is a short explanation of why the evolution of seed plants changes and affects the growth of other species populations.


Kingdom Characters: Spermatophytes


Hi, I am seed plants.

I come in two forms as either angiosperm or gymnosperm.

Have flower and seeds or have seeds.

I am any plants that reproduce by seeds.

(Proceed to point to the window and point to plants: “that’s me” and “that’s also me”)

If you want to further see the molecular structure of me, please open to page 45 in your textbook.


If you look at the trophic structure, I am at the bottom of the chart. The primary producers. The reason that all the other terrestrials organisms survive.


I absorb carbon dioxide, water, and use sunlight energy to create food, glucose. Energy for all other terrestrial animals. So you should be grateful because now, I dominate the whole plants’ population. Without me, there is no food.


So, imagine life without me, and that you all have to live only off sporophytes. There is just not enough energy around!

Look I am not trying to look down at sporophytes or anything; I meant I evolve from it, my ancestors. But let’s just say, the evolution is on my end right now.


Dating back millions of years ago, scientists are still not sure, but they predict that my ancestor is some multi-cellular plants. The bryophytes, they are short/small because they need to move the water throughout its structure. And they reproduce with spores. Later on, they went through an adaptation to have vessels that help to conduct water and nutrients, the rise of sporophytes.


Then I came in afterward, the evolution of the seed. I mean I come into being like 360 million years ago, during the later part of Devonian Period. It took a lot of time to become who I am today. The spore-bearing plants still dominate until the later part of Carboniferous. However, the start of Permian was when my form and function fit the environment better. As at that time, the temperature started to drop and became drier.


Spores don’t have the mechanism to wait, they have to germinate right away. So with the lack of water, their population started to decrease. And that where I’m coming in and continuing to grow until today. Seeds have a significant advantage here, I have seed coat to protect the embryo. There are cotyledon and endosperm that provide nutrients to the embryo, so my population doesn’t have to germinate until the right condition. Allow my populations to produce fertile offsprings.

Continue reading “Evolution of Spermatophytes”

Should Genetic Engineering be Used in Science?

This assignment is to write an argumentative essay whether genetic engineering should be used. Every student wrote an essay based on their research or/and opinion and we had a debate on this topic. At the end of the debate, we had agreed upon creating an organization that would in charge of all scientific research. We believe that science research should be a resource that share between all researchers in a database. 


Un-Ethical Usage of Genetically Modified Organisms

Does banana suppose to have seeds? The answer is yes, or at least before scientists had genetically modified the fruit. The commercial bananas that we found in our local market have small specks of black dots, that was supposed to be the seed of the fruit. Now, we can only find seeds, usually around 1 cm in diameter, within wild banana species. Genetic recombination had dated back to over 30,000 years ago when humans altered gene of wild organisms to domesticate them through a process of selective breeding. However, scientists started to directly alter the DNA of organisms in 1973, by replacing different genes within the DNA strand. Currently, genetic engineering is a gateway for scientists to help combating malnutrition, disease, and climate change. However, scientists don’t stop with just plants, genetic-modified animal has become a common research topic within genetic engineering. This alteration mainly focusing on affecting the gene of the organism’s offspring such as to reduce/increase the lifespan of a species, to change in the likelihood of produce male/female offspring, or to completely add a new characteristic/traits to that animal. With such a big range of alternatives of which genetic engineering can cover, there should be a border as to what scientist can do.


In 1990, European scientists had worked on a project that believed, to be the rice that could save a million kids a year, to combat vitamin A deficiency. This Golden Rice is conventional rice that had been altered to have a rich level of vitamin A. The only difference between white rice and this genetically modified rice is the presence of beta-carotene which helps to enrich vitamin A. There are two versions of transgenes that achieve this goal; one is to a gene from corn and another from an ingested soil bacterium, which helps rice to produce beta-carotene by allowing rice to activate its metabolic carotenoid pathway. This project created with an aim to help children that suffer from vitamin A deficiency which could lead to childhood blindness, weak immune system, and increase the vulnerability to illnesses such as measles, respiratory infections, and diarrhea which sometimes result in death. However, currently, there only a few nations that publicly announced that the Golden Rice is safe to consume in countries such as: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United States, Philippines, and Bangladesh. Thereby, the Golden Rice still not available for distribution or on the market, showing that nations that needed this bioengineered rice the most still don’t have access to it.


On the other hand, as the global temperature increases, scientists have been working on food production for the future. Altering genes of different crops to adapt to climate change. The increase of drought and the elevation of carbon dioxide and ozone level are few of the outcomes of climate change. Therefore, scientists have been working on altering genes of crops to build a tolerance to a lower level of precipitation, higher exposure to sunlight, and lower accessibility to nutrient. However, this ambition is rather difficult to achieve as scientists are limited to exploiting the existing genetic variation to only those crops that are very close relatives. Furthermore, within the unpredictable environmental stress, scientists are still struggling to find specific gene recombination that allows adapting to a large range of environmental stress. In addition, with the current GMO crops are still significantly more expensive than conventional crops, most farmers still couldn’t afford the GMO even though, it could lead to higher yield and product quality. Therefore, this aspect of gene modification might not be necessary. Why do scientists spend large expense, resources, and time on something that couldn’t be implemented besides from a higher economic country?   


The number of cases of mosquitoes borne diseases has been increased for this past decade, and it is no surprise to know that scientists had genetically modified the gene of this nuisance insect. With up to 91 countries had suffered from mosquitoes borne-disease epidemic, Oxitec had genetically engineered Aedes aegypti, a vector of dengue virus, specifically males, to that they carry a lethal gene and release them to breed with the wild females. When offsprings inherited this gene, they would die in the larval stage. Which leads to a 5o percents decrease in the population. This same technology has proven to have a greater impact in other countries such as the Cayman Islands, Brazil, Malaysia, and Panama, up to 90% of the Aedes aegypti population had lost. Is this the success scientists trying to achieve, to wipe out a species? The most unethical part of this research is the lack of small experimental trials before release GM mosquitoes into the ecosystem. Scientists haven’t studied the relationship between mosquitoes and other species beforehand. Thereby, it still is unclear regarding the impact of the loss of mosquitoes population.  


Although, many of the research projects related to genetic engineer have a positive result, successful in that gene alteration projects, the effect of GMO in the ecosystem is still uncertain. There isn’t long enough trails that study introduces a species into the real world, which means that there is a possibility of an adverse effect. Furthermore, genetic engineering is unethical, this technology was created to solve a global issue, but the availability of GM crops/products are still unavailable for the majority of the world.


Works Cited

“Biotechnology for Crop Adaptation.” Climate Technology Centre & Network, 25 Jan. 2019, www.ctc-n.org/technologies/biotechnology-climate-change-adaptation-crops.

“From Corgis to Corn: A Brief Look at the Long History of GMO Technology.” Science in the News, 23 Oct. 2016, sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2015/from-corgis-to-corn-a-brief-look-at-the-long-history-of-gmo-technology/.

“Genetically Modified Mosquito Sparks a Controversy in Florida.” Yale E360, e360.yale.edu/features/genetically_modified_mosquito_sparks_a_controversy_in_florida.

“Golden Rice: The GMO Crop Greenpeace Hates and Humanitarians Love.” Genetic Literacy Project, Genetic Literacy Project, 9 Jan. 2019, geneticliteracyproject.org/2018/02/13/golden-rice-gmo-crop-greenpeace-hates-and-humanitarians-love/.

Mayer, Jorge. “Golden Rice Project.” Why Golden Rice, www.goldenrice.org/.

“The Banana Seed.” ProMusa – the Banana Knowledge Platform, www.promusa.org/The banana seed.

Different Forms of Energy

Energy: the ability to do work


Every movement we make requires energy. There are six forms of energy.

Chemical Energy: energy that stores within the bonds

Mechanical Energy: energy of a moving object

Thermal Energy: energy of the motion of molecules (or heat energy)

Radiation Energy: energy of lights, electromagnetic waves

Electrical Energy: energy of the movement of electrons

Nuclear Energy: energy stored within the nucleus of an atom

In our daily life basis,  energy had converted from one form to another; because according to the laws of thermodynamics, energy cannot be created or destroyed.


In this image, it shows that a girl is cycling. The peddling produces thermal energy and mechanical energy. The mechanical energy is then converted into electrical energy to heat up the water. Which the boiling water then produces thermal energy.


Relationship Between Lesson and Students’ Comprehension

Research Topic: Using Anchoring Bias to Improve Highschool Student’s Comprehension of Social Study Lessons

Lessons within social studies are known to be “multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary”, meaning that there are many different academic subjects such as political science, human geography, sociology, involve to approach and comprehend a societal issue. Therefore, this field can be subjective, meaning that students can use their own opinion to comprehend or make judgment of the matter raised in the lesson. According to the concept of judgment under Uncertainty: Heuristics and Biases by Kahneman and Tversky, 1974, anchoring bias would affect student’s comprehension and memorization. Anchoring bias is a tendency to use the first giving information to make a judgment, therefore, those students’ decision making is evolved around the first fundamental information. This experiment seeks to understand the relationship between the first giving information (anchoring bias) of the social lesson and students’ understanding of a topic and their opinion regarding the issue raises in the lesson. This study aims to set a neutral first given information, that allows students to make rational information within a bias to influence their conclusion.

Observing Osmosis in Bok Choy

This lab was aimed to visualize the concept of osmosis, a process in which a cell loses or gains water depending on the concentration of solute relative to the cell. In this experiment, the solute is the salt, while water is the solvent. Students were divided into a pair- given a vegetable to each team, and we had to measure the movement of the water.


Introduction to Osmosis and Dehydration Lab:

Osmosis is a form of diffusion, the process in which cells uptake or lose water; water molecules move across cells’ membrane to a location with a higher concentration of solute, which in this experiment is the salt. Brassica rapa subsp. Chinensis (commonly known as Bok choy), just like all other living organisms have cells and tissues that are composed of mostly water. Therefore, organisms’ cells will lose water to the saltier (hypertonic) outside environment, causes it to dehydrate and shrink, which is also called plasmolysis. In addition, organisms’ cells will gain water from the freshwater (hypotonic) solution, allows it to gain mass. Due to another form of diffusion, organisms will also gain salt, due to the higher salinity of the solution, the salt molecules would be moving into the plant cells, which contains less salt content. Thereby, the organisms that are put in the experimental groups’ solution, will become salty.

Osmosis and Dehydration Lab

Active Listening

In this term, we learn about communication, one of the topics we covered in class is active listening.

A conversation requires both parties to pay attention. People often use the analogy of a ping-pong game to describe what a conversation should be like, taking turn talking. Besides from this essential point, it is also fundamental to listen to what others say. Being an active listener would show the speaker that, you are paying attention to what they are saying.

Three basic steps to becoming a better listener. *These are the steps that I especially struggle with.

Step 1: Listen to understand rather than listen to speak.

Personally, sometimes I found myself listening to find the opportunity to jump into the conversation. It is common for people to listen to find flaws, or chance so that they can talk about their own idea. However, in order to become a better communicator, we also need to be a better listener. A way to listen to understand is to mentally take notes of what the speaker said.

Step 2: Showing small gestures of understanding and verbal encouragement.

Nodding your head as a sign of agreement, if you agree with the point, would show that you are having a similar idea, this would encourage the speaker to talk more about their idea. Saying small verbal of encouragement such as “oh, I see” or “I understand” helps the speaker to understand their tone and information.

Step 3: Giving a small summary of what the speaker said.

I personally find this strategy helpful, not only that I am able to pay more attention but rather understand what the speaker said fully. This is an opportunity to check whether your interpretation of the information is correct. As well as a way to show the speaker that you’re listening.   

Function Transformation

Graph Transformation:

A group of students is currently learning Pre-calculus, the introduction to calculus. A part of our lesson is to understand functions and their transformation.

Graph transformation is about understanding how does the graph change if we add, subtract, or multiply a certain value to a function. To be a function, an x-value can only correspond to one y-value.

This is a function because none of the x-value corresponds to more than one y-value. 

The graph shifts upward by 5 units.  

(-2, -8) → (-2, -3)     (0, 0) → (0, 5)        (2, 8) → (2, 13)

Continue reading “Function Transformation”

Determining Bonding Types

Determining Bonding Types:

In this experiment, we were given three different types of substances, A, B, and C. However, we do not know the identity of each substance, therefore, we have to determine which substance is paraffin, sucrose and sodium bicarbonate based on some of their physical properties. In this lab, we tested two different characteristics, melting point and solubility, to figure out what type of bond the substance has.

Data and Analysis


Data Table: Melting Points
  Observations about the solid substance Melting Order Ionic, Covalent or

Polar Covalent?

Substance A melt slowly

Turn brown

The smell comes out

2 polar covalent has a low melting point but not as low as those in the non-polar covalent
Substance B nothing happen yet 3 ionic compound it has a high melting point
Substance C melt very quicklyturn into liquid

The smell   out

1 non- polar covalent has a low melting point


Data Table: Solubility in water
  Observations Solubility Ionic, Covalent or Polar Covalent? Reasoning for identification
Substance A When put in the solvent, the substance sink Soluble polar covalent since water has is a polar covalent with both positive and negative charge, therefore compound that has charge (ionic and polar) would be attracted to the water molecules
Substance B when put in the solvent, the substance sink,

melt quickly, faster than sugar

Soluble ionic compound since water has is a polar covalent with both positive and negative charge, therefore compound that has charge (ionic and polar) would be attracted to the water molecules and easily breaks the compound bonds
Substance C When put in the solvent, the substance float Insoluble non-polar covalent non-polar compound doesn’t have charges


Analysis Data Table –Compiling & Interpreting Results
  Melting Point Order Solubility Ionic, Covalent or Polar Covalent?
Substance A 2 Soluble Polar Covalent
Substance B 3 Soluble Ionic
Substance C 1 Insoluble Non-polar covalent


What is the identity of substance A?  What is your evidence and reasoning for this identification?

Substance A has a low melting point which means that it is either a polar or non-polar covalent compound. However this substance is soluble, therefore it is a polar covalent compound. Therefore, substance A is sucrose.

What is the identity of substance B?  What is your evidence and reasoning for this identification?

The identification of substance B be is sodium carbonate. This substance has a high melting point and is quickly dissolved in water, which is two of the identification of an ionic compound.

What is the identity of substance C?  What is your evidence and reasoning for this identification?

Substance C has a low melting point which means that it is either a polar or non-polar covalent compound. However, it is insoluble, which are the identification of a non-polar solvent compound.  Since paraffin wax is the only non-polar covalent compound, substance C is paraffin wax.

One source of error in this experiment could have been the heat intensity of the hot plate, some part of this hot plate might be hotter (the inner part), therefore, the substance that is put in that place might melt faster than the other. This can possibly change the order of which substance starts to melt first.

I would reduce the error and improve the lab by…

I way I would do to reduce this error is to melt the substance one by one, as well as putting that substance on the same location. As well as use timer to record how long it takes to melt each substance.


Research Topic

Topic: Using Tversky and Kahneman’s heuristics to improve learning.

Question: is it possible to use Tversky and Kahneman’s heuristics to improve students’ learning and comprehension?

Their heuristics are believe to be the influence factors of which people deal with uncertain situation. I believe that this also apply to learning because if an experience can affect the view of one decision making, then this will also we related to school, such as how an experience in class or a result in a test influence student’s view of the subject and lesson.

I personally fascinated by how human emotion and experience shape and structure us. And I think that the interference and assumption of emotion and experience is influence by the heuristics, which then influence students’ academic.

Therefore, I want to do an experiment on whether or not heuristics also influence when learning new knowledge or gaining new experiences.

Final Research Topic Question: How can we use Anchoring Bias to improve High School students’ grade in Cambodia? 

Finalizing Khmer Poetry Book

This first term of Khmer class, we predominantly worked on finalizing the Khmer Poetry Book that we wrote last school year. In Cambodia, poets always have rhyming within their writings, and we do not have a free verse-poem; so in this book, it’s consist of different types of poems, and how to write them. Furthermore, it also gives information regarding how to read the poems, many poems in Khmer are often has a different rhythms on how to read, and have different syllables to stress on; since each type of poem is unique, this book aims to help Cambodians to learn how to write poems. In addition, there are sections within the book that consists of different songs that the Liger Senior Cohort wrote in Khmer Class.


Below is an example of the 10 syllable poem or 10 peak poem, where each line must have 10 syllables, this example poem is written by Ly So Mony, the author of សៀវភៅកំណាព្យខ្មែរ.

As you can see the lines connecting words together, are representing that those syllables rhythm with each other. So in 10 peak poem, each line has two phrases, and each stanza has two lines.

For rhyming within stanza, the last syllable of the first phrase of a line has to rythm with the fifth syllable of the second phrase of the same line.  

And for rhyming across stanza, the last syllable of the second phrase of the second lines has to rhyme with the last syllable of second phrase of first line of the next stanza.