This is a genetics lab activity where students flip a coin to create a baby monster based on the genotypes of two parent monsters. Based on the genotype of the baby monster, students are then able to draw their monster. The lab is similar to the traditional "smiley face lab" or "make a baby lab," but with a fun and engaging twist.
Students get excited about creating their monster, and are excited to compare their monster with their classmates' work. Harness this excitement to have a class discussion about why siblings look similar but not identical, identical vs. fraternal twins, and genotype vs. phenotype. Additionally, as students will want to have "do-overs" for coin flips when they are unhappy with a trait, discussions about the ethics of genetic engineering is an excellent extension topic for older and/or more advanced students.
The lab data sheet includes all of the directions for students, as well as a "teacher check" before students draw their monster. Additionally, an extension activity, Monster Genetics Punnett Squares (with key) is included. The extension activity is great for early finishers or for homework after the lab.
The Monster Genetics Lab is great for middle school students who are just learning genetics, or high school students who need a refresher. There are many opportunities after the lab for meaningful discussions about genetics, traits, the relationship between the phenotypes of parents and offspring, and genetic engineering.
Lab data sheet
Example data sheets and monster drawings
Monster Genetics Punnett Squares worksheets
Monster Genetics Punnett Squares key