Independent Assortment is crucial to understanding high school biology but is a difficult topic to teach, because it is pretty abstract. A good visual is key to teaching meiosis, chromosome genetics, and karyotypes. My students really love having this very visual and hands-on activity to help them. Use this lesson and watch a lot of light bulbs come on as your students embrace this tough concept! Each student colors a unique karyotype and you could have the students hang up their karyotypes around the room and compare how, even if they were siblings, each karyotype will be different!
I normally use this lesson at the beginning of the mitosis and meiosis unit after a 30 minute lesson on the basics of what a chromosome is, haploid vs diploid, autosomes vs sex chromosomes, gametes vs somatic cells, and what a karyotype is.
This PDF file can be printed easily on 8.5”x11” paper in landscape mode.
Page 1: Instructions and Grandparents’ Karyotypes
Page 2: Parents’ Karyotypes and Instructions how to produce their independently assorted chromosomes in their gametes.
Page 3: Large Personalized Karyotype Diagram
Page 4: Questions for Students to answer after their coloring activity. Some are basic, some are more advanced and require longer responses.
Page 5: Challenge Question for Advanced Students, Early Finishers, or as an additional assignment/extra credit for after you teach Meiosis. It is a great way to tie meiosis back to this activity’s concepts. I like to print this separately from the first 4 pages and hand it out separately as desired.
Page 6: Teacher Tips/Answer Key
Page 7: NEWLY UPDATED: Sample picture of what each student's will look like.
If you would like colorful (or black and white) detailed, accurately banded karyotypes for quiz, poster, or PowerPoint diagrams, check out my Karyotype Clip Art Set!
I designed this lesson to address Next Generation Science Standard*
Make and defend a claim based on evidence that inheritable genetic variations may result from: (1) new genetic combinations through meiosis, (2) viable errors occurring during replication, and/or (3) mutations caused by environmental factors.
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*Next Generation Science Standards is a registered trademark of Achieve. Neither Achieve nor the lead states and partners that developed the Next Generation Science Standards was involved in the production of, and does not endorse, this product. (Disclaimer written and required by Next Generation Science Standards for all lessons sold that reference their name)