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1 September 2012 I Walk the Line: A Popular Termite Activity Revisited
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Abstract

Since 1968, biologists have known that termites line up and follow some ballpoint ink lines but not others. Suggestions for class lessons based on this observation have become widespread. However, many of these are incomplete, superficial, conflicting, and/or occasionally inaccurate, and most provide only simple demonstrations or cookbook-style confirmations. Here, we provide added background for this activity to update, clarify, and expand it. Some ways to use termite trail-following to teach fundamental life and physical science concepts through hands-on inquiry are presented, based on our experience with university students and teachers. These activities, adaptable to many instructional levels, range in scope from a single laboratory session to extended investigation.

©2012 by National Association of Biology Teachers. All rights reserved. Request permission to photocopy or reproduce article content at the University of California Press's Rights and Permissions Web site at www.ucpressjournals.com/reprintinfo.asp.
Robert W. Matthews and Janice R. Matthews "I Walk the Line: A Popular Termite Activity Revisited," The American Biology Teacher 74(7), 490-495, (1 September 2012). https://doi.org/10.1525/abt.2012.74.7.11
Published: 1 September 2012
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