Physiology of the Circulatory System — Lab Prep

  1. Measuring Blood Pressure
    • To prepare for the blood pressure exercise, simply place the appropriate number of alcohol swabs, sphygmomanometers, and stethoscopes at the front of the classroom.
    • Be sure to check over each of the component parts of the sphygmomanometers, including the tubing, cuff, manometer, and bulb to ensure they are undamaged.
  2. Respiration in Fish
    • To prepare for the fish respiration experiment, one week before the goldfish arrive, set up two 10-gallon tanks in the room near a window.
    • Add around 9 gallons of water to the tanks to a depth of about 1 inch below the rim.
    • Then, mix in dechlorinator according the directions on the bottle.
    • Add in liquid beneficial bacteria according to the manufacturer's instructions.
    • Now, hang the filter on the side of the tank, fill up the trough with water, and then plug the filter in to begin cycling the water.
    • Once you plug in the filter, check to see if it is running properly.
    • Leave the tank to cycle for one week before adding fish. This will establish the beneficial bacteria, creating a healthy environment for the animals.
    • The fish should arrive in a plastic bag filled with water. Float this bag in the 10-gallon tank for approximately 20 minutes, so that the water in the bag and tank acclimate to the same temperature.
    • When the water has acclimated, carefully open the bag and add some of the tank water, and then gently pour the fish into the tank. IMPORTANT: The fish should not be fed the day they are introduced into the tank.
    • Feed the fish the following day with just a pinch of crushed food.
    • Change 10% of the water everyday, making sure the fresh water is at the same temperature as the tank water. Don't forget to add fresh dechlorinator when you change the water.
    • One hour before class, set up five water baths in the front of the classroom. Label each water bath with one of the five temperature conditions.
    • Next, fill the water baths up halfway with either aquarium water or dechlorinated tap water.
    • Then, set the temperatures in accordance with the labels, and place a temperature probe into each water bath.
    • If the temperature is warmer than 20 - 22 °C, use dechlorinated ice cubes to cool the water down before the lab.
    • Finally, place enough clear containers with screw caps next to the tanks, so that each pair of students will have two.