This activity gives students insights into "real" basic genetics and also teaches about chromosomes, genes, alleles, heterozygotes, homozygotes, genotypes, and phenotypes.
Please check out the preview to see everything you are getting in this activity packet!
So few textbooks and activities really teach students the difference between allele and gene and so few really show where genes are located on chromosomes in relation to each other. Here are just a few concepts that this activity can help clarify for your students without going to deep into vocabulary. The activity is not meant to be a vocabulary activity but a conceptual activity.
- Diploid organisms have chromosome pairs that have the same genes but may have different alleles (or codes) within those genes.
- Chromosomes in organisms of the same species look very similar and are almost the same, except for small allele changes normally.
- Dominance does not at all mean "common" but it means that one allele hides the appearance of another allele within the same gene.
- Organisms with different genotypes can look deceptively the same on the outside.
Students color in several fruit flies on their coloring page and soon realize that most of the fruit flies look very much the same or similar. Then, they cut out wild type and mutant alleles and paste them on chromosomes unique to their assigned fly number. Students with different numbers can actually compare their chromosome sheets after completing them. I like to have students compare two different sheets as a warm-up for the next day or an exit ticket for that same day, depending on time.
There are essentially 4 separate pieces of this packet which can be done on 4 separate days or in fewer days if your class periods contain enough time. Please check out my preview to see each part in detail!
Looking for other genetics resources?
Color your own Karyotype: Independent Assortment Lesson
Karyotype Clip Art Set!
Explain Chromosomal Abnormalities and Crossing Over with Coloring
Understanding Genetics with Robots: 3 Day Lesson Plan with Activities to show students what Genes and Proteins actually do.
Pedigree Genetics, Basic and Advanced Tutorials
Basic Genetics for Middle School with Easter Eggs!
Cookbook Analogy Reading to help students understand Genes, Alleles, and Chromosomes
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