Sat, Jan 03, 2009 - Page 13 News List

WEEKEND SCIENCE: Learning about the rhythm of life 探索生命的節奏

Welcome to Weekend Science! Every Saturday we’re going to guide you through some cool experiments that you can do at home. It’s a good idea for you to keep a record of what you do in a Science Journal. That way you can record what you learn, compare results and maybe use them to design new experiments! Remember to always ask a grown-up’s permission before trying out an experiment.

歡迎閱讀《週末科學版》!我們每週六都要為你介紹可以在家中進行的有趣科學實驗。你可以在《科學日誌》中記錄自己做了哪些活動,這樣就可以將所學的記錄下來,比較這些結果,也許還可以利用它們來設計新的實驗!先看一下《科學日誌》的點子再開始吧。展開實驗之前,記得要獲得大人許可喔!

A group of people look at the sun, standing on the rocky crest filled with astronomical markers at the megalithic observatory of Kokino, Macedonia, soon after sunrise on June 21, 2008, on the day of the summer solstice.
六月二十一日夏至拂曉時分,一群人站在馬其頓科其諾巨石瞭望台佈滿天文記號的山岩頂端眺望太陽。照片:法新社

PHOTO: AFP

Although you may not be aware of it, your body goes through several changes in a 24-hour period. The purpose of these changes is to keep your body in harmony with the environment, specifically changes in daylight. These changes are attributed to the circadian rhythm. Some of the bodily functions that are affected by the circadian rhythm are body temperature, reaction times, blood pressure and muscle strength.

In today’s experiment you will attempt to find out how your own circadian rhythm affects your body temperature and reaction times.

You will need: a thermometer, a notebook and access to the Internet.

(JOHN PHILLIPS, STAFF WRITER)

你可能不知道,你的身體一天二十四小時中會經歷好幾個階段的變化。這些為了讓身體能適應環境變化,特別是日光變化的轉變,即為「生理時鐘」。受生理時鐘調控的生理機能包含體溫、反應時間、血壓及肌力等。

實驗所需:一個溫度計、一本筆記本和網路。

(翻譯:袁星塵)

 

METHODOLOGY

You are going to take your temperature and test your reaction times four times per day over a three-day period. You should aim to do the tests at the same time each day, so before you start, make sure you’ll be free at those times. Suggested times for the tests are 7.30am, 12am, 5pm and 9pm.

In your notebook, draw a results table. Try not to do anything immediately before the tests that might affect the results. For example, eating a large meal will slow down your reactions, whereas drinking a caffeinated drink will speed them up.

Step 1: At 7.30am, take your temperate using the thermometer. Digital thermometers are more accurate, but not essential. Record the results in your results table.

Step 2: The best way to test your reaction times is to use an online test. Search for “reaction times test” using your favorite search engine and you should be presented with dozens of suitable tests. Try a few of them until you settle on one that you like.

VOCABULARY 今日單字

1. circadian adj.

全天的 (quan2 tian1 de5)

2. reaction n.

反應 (fan3 ying4)

3. aim v.i./v.t.

致力 (zhi4 li4)

4. immediately adv.

緊接地 (jin3 jie1 de5)

5. accurate adj.

精準的 (jing1 zhun3 de5)

6. suitable adj.

合適的 (he2 shi4 de5)


Step 3: Test your reaction times using the online test. Record the result in the results table.

Step 4: Repeat step 1-3 at 7.30am 12am, 5pm and 9pm for three consecutive days.

方法

你將進行一項為期三天的實驗,在這三天中,你每天都要測量你的體溫和反應時間四次。每天都儘可能在同一時間進行測量,所以開始實驗之前,最好先確定你有空的時段。我們建議的時間為上午七點半、中午十二點、下午五點和晚上九點。

在筆記本中畫下記錄結果的表格。盡量不要在測試前從事可能會影響結果的活動,例如吃大餐可能會減緩反應時間,喝含有咖啡因的飲料則會加速反應時間。

步驟一:早上七點半,用溫度計測量體溫。電子溫度計的結果較為精準,但並非非它不可。在你做的表格中記下測量結果。

步驟二:測量反應時間最好的方式是利用線上測驗。用你平時愛用的搜尋引擎上網搜尋「reaction time test」,你應該可以找到一大堆合適的線上測驗。試試其中幾種,直到選定一種你最喜歡的測驗。

步驟三:利用選定的線上測驗測試你的反應時間,並將結果記錄在表格中。

步驟四:連續三天在上午七點半、中午十二點、下午五點和晚上九點重複步驟一至步驟三。

ANALYZE THE RESULTS

結果分析

Put your findings in a graph. When was your body temperature highest? When were your reactions quickest? Perhaps there was no pattern. Why do you think that was? Think of ways to make the test more comprehensive. You could include more people or you could also test for muscle strength and blood pressure.

將你的測試結果製成圖表。你的體溫哪個時候最高?你的反應何時最快?結果可能沒有固定的模式,你認為原因為何?想想看有什麼方式可以讓這個測驗更全面性?你可以請更多人一起進行測試,或者也針對肌力及血壓進行測量。

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