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Grapes, licorice and marble cheese: Tools of the trade for award-winning Biology instructor
Winner of the 2001 Laurier Award for Teaching Excellence for part-time faculty members
Sheila McKee-Protopapas says she doesn't get into gimmicks or cheap theatrics in her classes. She does admit, however, that when you're teaching Animal Histology, there is a place in the lab for marble cheese, grapes and strawberry licorice.
In histology, students use microscopes to study cells, tissues and organs, and she says it's surprising how much marble cheese looks like the red and white pulp of the spleen, how a bunch of grapes looks like a salivary gland, and how red licorice resembles a blood vessel.
Pedagogy aside, the students can also "cut up and eat the specimens," she says. "The body is a veritable buffet!"
McKee-Protopapas, who has been teaching Biology since 1983, has just been given the 2001 Wilfrid Laurier University Award for Teaching Excellence for part-time faculty members. It is the first year an award has been given to part-time Laurier faculty.