I teach AP Biology and General Science at Cooperative Arts & Humanities Magnet High School. This is a performing arts magnet school, located in the city of New Haven, CT. Being a magnet school we draw 30% of our students from surrounding districts that are a mix of urban and suburban school systems. We utilize a block schedule with four 90 minute periods a day.
I teach AP Biology as a sophomore year class. Though the content appears vast the underlying focus is on the application of science to the living world. This class is about teaching students how the mysteries of life are described and understood with critical and creative thinking.
The content of this unit, the human immune system and disease will cover the immune system along with infectious diseases and autoimmune diseases. The unit will also present information about medicines in development to usher in a new era of immune system bioengineering to correct immune system defects and restore competence of our complex defense system.
The human immune system is extremely complex, but easily understood when one focuses on the roles of the different components. This unit is tailored to provide enough content to allow for a deeper understanding of the immune system, but at times, may be too in depth for the average biology class. Information about infectious diseases and autoimmune diseases is presented solely to exemplify the functions of the immune system and not as a content bank about specific diseases. Personal hygiene and antibiotic use is discussed in terms of the human microbiota. Lastly, content about disease remedies using nanotechnology is presented to augment classroom discussion about immunity and elicit a deeper understanding about how the immune system functions. The ultimate goal is to frame the immune system's shortcomings and malfunction as the cause of disease through which the remedy can be found.