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#R5044
Genetics and Probability

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Word Document
SDB
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Description This is a lab for middle school or high school students exploring how probability applies to genetics. Students collect data using beads and a coin as examples of alleles. The analysis questions walk students through the steps of expressing probabilities as a fraction or as a decimal. The students are also asked to draw a Punnett square which relates probability to offspring of a particular cross.
Type of Resource Assignment/Activity (Non-Laboratory/Non-Hands on Activity), Laboratory or Hands-On Activity
Format Word Document - DOC
Author
Jennifer Taylor, Washington University
Development Date March 30, 2009
Grade/Age Levels Middle School (Grades 6-8)
High School lower division (Grades 9-10)
High School upper division (Grades 11-12)
General Public
Pedagogies
National Science
Educational Standards
Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry (K-12), Molecular basis of heredity (9-12), Reproduction and heredity (5-8)
Learning Time <=1 hour
Language English
Type of Review Reviewed by SDB Peer Reviewers
Review Date October 29, 2011
Funding Source None
Suggested Use

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This is a helpful modeling exercise to help students understand the role of probability in genetics.  Frequently punnett squares become a procedural algorithm  and are not appreciated for what they truly model.  I would use this simulation before introducing punnett squares and then refer back to it through the sequence of instruction.  

Jenny Sarna, Farragut Career Academy


This hands-on lab provides students an opportunity to explore how probability relates to genetics. Probability is often a challenging concept and this lab breaks it down in a simplified manner as students collect and analyze actual data using beads. The students than apply what they learn to Punnett squares. It would best be used to introduce probability in a high school level Biology course.
Natasha Ezerski, Seneca Valley High School


This hands-on lab provides students an opportunity to explore how probability relates to genetics. Probability is often a challenging concept and this lab breaks it down in a simplified manner as students collect and analyze actual data using beads. The students than apply what they learn to Punnett squares.
Natasha Ezerski, Seneca Valley High School