If you’re ready to have your students work with specimens to study genetics, Wisconsin Fast Plants® are a superb vehicle. This resource consists of two labs. The first lab has students germinate and analyze a large collection of F2 seeds to try and determine parental genotype. Students germinate seeds in Petri dishes which is simple to do. Results are evident as soon as a few days but can be collected over the next two weeks if that’s more convenient.
The second lab is for students who want to pursue this investigation by crossing two of the offspring to try to determine their genotype based on their offspring. Since plants must mature, be pollinated, and the resulting seeds germinated, this lab requires a few minutes each day over a month or so.
I love having students do real science that models what scientists do in their labs. From Mendel to present day, crossing plants to study dominant and recessive traits with
Use this to learn and reinforce answers to questions such as:
❑ How do you assess the phenotype of offspring?
❑ How can you determine parental genotypes based on the frequencies of phenotypes of their offspring?
❑ Why are recessive alleles so helpful when crossing organisms to determine genotype?
❑ Are genes always obvious in progeny? Why or why not?
Answer Keys and Teacher Notes
address most questions and issues that might arise in this study—you shouldn’t have to do any outside research unless you want to.
♦ Genes are passed from parent to offspring in a specific way.
♦ Each parent passes half of its genes to each of its offspring
♦ Offspring may or may not appear like their parents depending which genes are transmitted.
♦ Parental genotype can be determined based on the frequency of various traits in the offspring.
First lab: Wisconsin Fast Plant® seeds (specific cross recommended), 40 Petri dishes, paper towels
Second lab: Seedling from first lab (or seeds), fertilizer, light and watering setup for growing these plants, 40+ Petri dishes, paper towels
The first lab takes about 30 minutes to set up; 15 minutes to analyze the results one week later.
The second lab takes about 30 minutes to set up; short daily care for 30 days; 40 minutes to harvest and set up seeds for germination;15 minutes to analyze the results one week later.
Prep Time Required
If you choose to do the second lab, you’ll need some type of light and watering setup for the plants. DIY ideas abound and specialized equipment is also sold.
Scaffolded writing prompts & lab reporting
Connect with me…
to visit my website to find out about teaching ideas and resources. • If you enjoy this product, please leave feedback
to earn credits for future purchases! • If you have questions or problems, please let me know in the Q&A section and I’ll get back to you asap.
Wisconsin Fast Plants® images and growing procedures used with permission, courtesy of the Wisconsin Fast Plants Program, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences: University of Wisconsin-Madison: www.fastplants.org. These copyrighted images cannot be re-used or altered without written permission of the copyright holder: Wisconsin Fast Plants Program, www.fastplants.org
Copyright © Carolyn Balch. All rights reserved by the author. This product is to be used by the original downloader only. Copying for more than one teacher, classroom, department, school, or school system is prohibited. This product may not be distributed or displayed digitally for public view. Failure to comply is a copyright infringement and a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). Clipart and elements found in this PDF are copyrighted and cannot be extracted and used outside of this file without permission or license. Intended for classroom and personal use ONLY.