Honors students get excited about: SCIENCE

by Rachel Jones

What is every living thing around us made of? Cells! These incredibly intricate, small, detailed things make up every living organism including the grass outside and the skin on our arms. So what is so incredible about these things? Every second of every day of every year for our entire lives as human beings these cells are replicating. All cells, except for our sperm and egg cells, and replicating through mitosis. Here is a little glimpse at what mitosis is for those of us who may not remember from that high school biology class or intro level college class long ago….

So here we are. Our cells are replicating every second and in the end, we are made up of trillions of cells. TRILLIONS! We have somewhere between 10 to 50 trillion cells in our body. Let’s try and put this in perspective:


According to Google, it would take 31,710 years to count to one trillion. There are 24 hours in a day so you would count 24X60x60 = $8,6400 in one day. There are 365 days in a year so you would count 24X60x60x365 = $31,536,000 in one year. To find how long it would take to count to a trillion dollars divide 1 trillion by 31,536,000. That is 1,000,000,000,000/31,536,000 = 31,709.79 years. And that is only ONE TRILLION! Multiply that by about 30, and it would take us 951,300 years to count to thirty trillion and count all of the cells we have in our body right now.

So enough with the math, but can we step back and ponder how amazing the human body truly is and how much we have to be thankful for in our little human bodies. What an incredible intricate process cell division is!

Just to put an image with it, here is a scale of what one trillion pennies looks like:

Jones 2

See that teeny tiny little shadow beneath that whole pile of pennies? That is you and me. That is one person. Next we have an entire 120 yard football field and finally the huge tower, yes, that is the stack of one trillion pennies. So imagine, we have that many cells in our bodies and each one of those tiny itty bitty cells has the DNA that makes you, you and me, me. Wow, science is cool!

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