with Leigh Ann Yoder
The Puzzle of Life
Our class time this week was dedicated to understanding Protein Synthesis. This was mainly accomplished by a hands-on activity called, 'The Puzzle of Life.'
In this activity students demonstrated how the message in DNA becomes the raw material (protein) used by cells. By using RNA and amino acid puzzle pieces, students were able to demonstrate how the RNA molecule translates into a chain of amino acids (protein) and explore how changes (mutations) in the genetic code can impact cellular activities. Students worked in groups to translate a RNA sequence into a protein, discovered the outcomes of mutations and errors in the genetic code, and "treated" a genetic disorder using gene therapy.
Hopefully this activity along with our discussions clarified the Protein Synthesis process for the students.
We also spent some time talking about mutations. Specifically we focused on the effects of mutations. Mutations can have a positive, negative, or neutral effect on an organism. We also discussed how environment can play a critical role on the effect of a mutation.
I shared several websites with the students and we began to talk about the final projects. The specific parameters will not be discussed until next class. For now the students are to read about a variety of genetic mutations and pick their top two topics. These should be emailed to me this week.
For the project choice you can also look for a beneficial genetic condition. (A mutation or trait that benefits the organism.) Also, you can choose a condition that has no significant effect, such as color blindness. Any genetic condition that interests you is acceptable.
Read 4.1 Human Inheritance and complete Study Workbook
Read 4.2 Human Genetic Disorders and complete Study Workbook
Send me your top two choices for your project by Friday. Remember to choose a genetic disorder that you will be able to give a 5 minute presentation on.
Two websites to help you get started are:
Chapter 3 Test - Please bring to class for grading
Online Activity pg. 115 and 119