Science & Nature

Cell Bio Basics for Middle School

This course will guide a curious Biology-loving student through advanced topics such as cell signaling and membrane transport... while maintaining a casual and engaging learning environment!
89 total reviews for this teacher
New class

60 minutes

per class

Once per week

over 15 weeks


year olds


learners per class

per learner - per class

How does aMulti-Daycourse work?

Meets multiple times at scheduled times
Live video chats, recorded and monitored for safety and quality
Discussions via classroom forum and private messages with the teacher
Great for engaging projects and interacting with diverse classmates from other states and countries

How Outschool Works

Available Times

Pacific Time

Tue Aug 30

Aug 30 - Dec 13 (15 weeks)
8pm - 9pm

Thu Sep 1

Sep 1 - Dec 15 (15 weeks)
6:30pm - 7:30pm

Don't see a time that works for you?


Class Experience

This class is taught in English.
At the end of Unit 1, students should be able to... 
- Describe the events surrounding the discovery of the first cell. 
- Describe the structure and purpose of 4 biomolecules: nucleic acids, proteins, lipids, carbohydrates. 
- Describe the structure of DNA.
- Identify DNA bases and how they pair together with base pair rules.
- Identify parts of the cell: nucleus, nucleolus, rough ER, smooth ER, ribosome, Golgi apparatus, cytosol, lysosomes, vacuoles, plasma membrane, cytoskeleton, among others.

At the end of Unit 2, students should be able to...
- Describe how the membrane is structured, and explain the meaning behind the term "phospholipid bilayer." 
- Identify different channels in the membrane, such as ion and aquaporins. 
- Explain how the membrane is a fluid model that constantly moves. 
- Identify both active and passive forms of transport across the membrane.

At the end of Unit 3, students should be able to...
- Describe how cells divide using cell organelles discussed in Unit 1.
- Give an overview of the cell cycle. 
- Describe 3 types of cell signaling: autocrine, paracrine, endocrine
- Identify unique cells in the body and what makes them unique.
- Explain cell-induced apoptosis and cell responses to foreign invaders (T-cells)
- Describe relative sizes of cells, viruses, and bacteria.
I am a graduate student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute pursuing a Master's of Engineering (M.Eng.) in Biomedical Engineering. I currently hold a Bachelor's Degree in Biomedical Engineering with a concentration in Biomaterials. During my degree, I've been required to take Cellular Biology courses with intensive laboratory portions. In addition, I've taken courses in Biomaterials and in Physiology. 

I've been an online teacher for 6 years, and I've been teaching Cellular Biology at middle and high school levels for more than 2 of those years. This course is a continuation or a more advanced version of another Outschool class "All About Cells" that I ran with groups of 6-18 students at a time. I've also taught the same material in private sessions and in small groups.
The homework in this course comes from the workbook I'll send out at the beginning of the course. All assignments are meant to be brief (< 20 minutes), simple, and meaningful. Additional work can be given to students who request it, but I try to keep extra work to a minimum.

Homework assignments run off of an "honor system," and students do not need to turn anything in. However, they may do so if they wish to receive feedback or ask questions.
This course comes with a workbook for each unit. Students should print these workbooks, as they contain all of the homework assignments for the course as well as a couple in-class activities.

Students can bring their workbooks to class each day if they prefer to complete the homework assignments early or take notes. Sometimes, we go over previous homework assignments and students can check their work. There is no "note-taking" requirement. 

If students are required to bring their workbooks one day, I will notify them ahead of time.
In addition to the Outschool classroom, this class uses:
There are no assessments in the course. Students play interactive review games at the end of each unit to review and reinforce material!
1 hour per week in class, and an estimated 0 - 1 hours per week outside of class.
This course discusses biomolecules like protein, fats, and carbohydrates. If speaking about these dietary nutrients is uncomfortable for your learner, this course may not be for them. 

Although this course discusses mitosis in depth, there is absolutely no mention of meiosis or any sexual reproduction mechanisms.

This courses discusses cellular responses to viruses and bacteria. If your learner is uncomfortable talking about viruses or if this is frightening for them, this course may not be for them.

There is a possibility that vaccines are brought up as we discuss immune cells. In my classes, vaccines are viewed as a medical success and I speak of them as such. If you have problems with this point of view, this course may not be for your learner.
The curriculum for this course is my own, but my knowledge is mostly sourced from a textbook entitled The World of the Cell by Jeff Hardin and his colleagues. 

Less complex topics can also be sourced by most AP Biology textbooks, such as the ones by Campbell.


Sarah Tedesco
Lives in the United States
Happy, Holistic Teaching.
89 total reviews
46 completed classes

About Me

Hi, there! My name is Sarah Tedesco and I am a 22-year-old university student from Long Island, New York. I am a Biomedical Engineering major at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a concentration in Biomaterials and a minor in Psychology. I am... 
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