Elii Chapman is the 5th and 6th grade science and math teacher at Flagstaff Junior Academy. Elii engages in numerous hands-on studies with her students. She recently became a beta tester for Foldscope.
What is Foldscope? Taken from their website: Foldscope is an origami-based print-and-fold optical microscope that can be assembled from a flat sheet of paper. Although it costs less than a dollar in parts, it can provide over 2,000X magnification with sub-micron resolution (800nm), weighs less than two nickels (8.8 g), is small enough to fit in a pocket (70 × 20 × 2 mm3), requires no external power, and can survive being dropped from a 3-story building or stepped on by a person. Its minimalistic, scalable design is inherently application-specific instead of general-purpose gearing towards applications in global health, field based citizen science and K12-science education.
Ten thousand beta testers in over 130 countries were chosen to receive 50,000 Foldscopes. As a chosen tester, Elii received 12 Foldscopes. She invited FJA students and their parents to form a family Foldscope Club, and they met on April 11, 2015 to build the foldscopes.
Foldscopes were designed when Manu Prakash and his bioengineering team at Stanford University asked the questions, "What happens to the world if every single kid carries a microscope in his/her pocket? Moreover, what can we achieve in science, medicine, and industry with improved access to microscopes around the globe?"
Foldscopes can be attached to smart phones and the camera function can then take photographic images seen through the scope. These images can be uploaded to the Foldscope image site. The Foldscope Club also has a Pinterest site where you can see some of their images.