Outreach Offerings

Members of the MO-Evolves network offer a large number of outreach activities for diverse audiences, including pre- through high-schools students and teachers, college students and teachers,  and the general public. Activities have taken place for example on campuses, in schools, in public libraries, and outside. Below, we list some of the activities. Most of them can be tailored to diverse audiences and will be fun, interesting and exciting for your audience!  If you are interested in hosting one of them, or have an activity to offer, please contact us. If you are interested in something NOT listed here, feel free to contact us anyway: chances are, someone in the network will be able to help you!

Presentations / Talks:

The vertebrate eye: complexity and imperfection
Covers the anatomy, development, and evolution of the vertebrate lens eye. It reveals amazing facts about our eyes and includes hands-on, or rather ‘eye-on’ activities and demonstrations.

The evolution of the bacterial flagellum
Recent genetic structure revealed a simple and elegant scenario of the processes leading to this fascinating complex trait.

Understanding The Tree of Life
Darwin’s idea of shared common ancestry led to the notion of a tree of life. This talk gives the audience an understanding of phylogenetic tree-thinking and building, discussing relationships between organisms and origins of diversity. This could include a hands on or computational workshop on tree building.

Animal Songs and Evolution
Appropriate for all ages, learn how we use the noises animals make to understand the origins of the diversity of life on Earth.

How Science Works
A more detailed look at the inner workings of science and how one can tell it apart from pseudo-science and other forms of BS.

Classroom Activities

How female crickets find their mates
Hear the love song of real male crickets and observe how females localize and recognize them. We bring live crickets and facilitate arena experiments appropriate for k-12. Students manipulate cricket songs to find out what females are looking for in male songs.

Insect communication: variety in sound production and hearing
Covers the structure of different sound producing mechanisms and the anatomy of insect ears for commonly heard nocturnal insects, as well as the evolution of insect hearing. It demonstrates exciting variety of form and function used by insects to produce sound, localize, and recognize, and includes ‘ears-on’ activities and demonstrations.

Outdoor Activities

Sounds of summer evenings/nights
A nature walk to the singing insects, frogs, and birds of a summer night.

Fossil Walk
Learn about prehistoric life in Missouri, and find your own fossils on this field trip to one of several locations near Columbia, MO.

Bio-Blitz: surveys of the biodiversity in your area
Participants collect and identify animals/plants and generate lists of the diversity of life around you.