For this assessment you will conduct a kitchen science experiment in which you study the movement of materials into and out of cells. Individual cells are generally too small to see; however, a chicken egg is actually a single cell. Please note that on the whole this lab will take you 3 days to complete. However, there is less than 1 hour of ‘hands-on’ work on the first and last days.

Use the Membrane Lab procedure for your experimental set up.

Lab Procedure

Materials

  • Kitchen scale
  • Vinegar
  • 4 Eggs, uncooked
  • Distilled water
  • Corn syrup
  • 10% salt solution
  • Soda, sports drink, or ‘fitness water’ of your choice
  • Containers for eggs (clear plastic cups work well)
  • Ruler and/or measuring tape (a fabric/clothing one will work best)

Procedure

  1. Begin by removing shells from your eggs. Place an individual egg in a container and cover it with vinegar. Leave the egg soaking in the vinegar for 2 days. You are fully dissolving the eggshell so check the progress throughout this time. You may need to change the vinegar or leave the eggs for more than 2 days. Alternatively, at the end of the second day you may be able to wash away remaining eggshell.
  2. Once the shells are removed, carefully pour the vinegar off the eggs and rinse them with water. Gently rub the egg to remove any remaining shell. Don’t worry, as long as you are not too rough, your eggs will be fine!
  3. Refer to the table below to set up your experiments and develop your hypotheses.
  4. Carefully label fresh containers according to the table below.
  5. Take the required starting measurements.
  6. Place one egg into each container.
  7. Add the appropriate solution to each container; be sure to cover the eggs.
  8. During your data collection you should also photograph your experiment in progress.
  9. Leave the eggs to soak for 24 hours.
  10. Carefully remove your eggs and record the final measurements.

A note about this procedure:

It is possible your egg(s) will float in step 7. That is okay; just be sure there is plenty of liquid to cover them if they should sink.

Data Table

 Distilled WaterCorn Syrup10% SaltSports Drink
Container label    
Egg initial mass    
Egg initial width × length    
Egg final mass    
Egg final width × length    

Write-Up

When complete, write a lab report in MLA format that includes the following sections.

  • Introduction
  • Hypotheses
  • Materials and Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • Conclusion
  • References