This match game exposes students to a wide range of traits in plants and animals and requires them to distinguish whether they are inherited or acquired. Understanding the difference between inherited and acquired (learned) traits is a fundamental genetic concept. In the 5th grade (varies among states), students are expected to differentiate between traits or characteristics that are inherited and ones that are learned or acquired during an organism’s lifetime. This highly engaging, student-centered game is an effective way for students to differentiate between these types of traits. It also serves as an excellent formative assessment activity.
Grade Level: 5th (varies from state to state)
Duration: 45 minutes to 1 hour
• 4 to 6 laminated sets of cards
1. Divide students into groups of 3 or 4 and send them to an area with a flat surface for playing the game.
2. Each student group is given a set of cards.
3. Students turn cards face down and mix them up.
4. Once cards are well mixed, they are placed in rows and columns (face down).
5. The first student turns over two cards and verbally identifies the picture on the card and tells the group if it is an inherited or acquired/learned trait.
Marianne Dobrovolny - www.biologylessons.org
Traits Match Game: Inherited vs Acquired
by Marianne Dobrovolny
is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License