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Science technology is brought to a 7th grade classroom

A box of small blinking tablets sat on the edge of Sarah Madison’s desk. These tablets, called PillCams, are just slightly larger than an over-the-counter aspirin pill and contain a miniature video camera equipped with a light source, batteries, a radio transmitter and antenna.  When swallowed, the PillCam videotapes its journey through the patient’s digestive system. Page 222 in the 7th grade science book highlights this modern medical technology.

Phillip Vaughan, a representative of Given Imaging, the company that produces the Pill Cam, visited Mrs. Sarah Madison’s class to show how this technology has revolutionized how doctors diagnose and treat intestinal disease. Sarah Madison’s students were studying the major systems of the human body and had learned about the digestive and excretory systems. Students were fascinated as they watched a videotape of the PillCam travel past the epiglottis, through the esophagus, into the stomach and through the intricate curving pathways of the intestines. During his presentation, Mr. Vaughan stopped to describe where the pill was in the body or ask questions. He showed where doctors might notice a spot on the small intestine indicating an iron deficiency, a malformation indicating Crohn’s disease or a polyp revealing cancer.  
The audience of students oohed, aahed and sometimes covered their faces as they watched and listened. Carly McDonald and Austin Stone, who won prizes for being the first to correctly answer Mr. Vaughan’s questions, said the presentation was “very cool”. â€œThis was a great way to illustrate how science is important in everyday life and show kids that what they are learning today is relevant and significant,” said Mrs. Madison.

Written by: Brita Mann
Posted: Feb 24, 2012 by Brita Mann

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