DNA and Genetics turns to GMOs

Kayla Spurgeon
Kayla Spurgeon

Our DNA and Genetics course has allowed students to explore how DNA, chromosomes, and genetics work together to form the traits in which are expressed. So far, students have had the opportunity to create DNA necklaces from their own DNA, create a three-dimensional model of a dragon based on genotypes and phenotypes, and perform DNA electrophoresis for five different case studies. They also grew plants to test genetic crosses, an activity that led to a discussion about GMO food.

On July 6th, our class took a field trip to Frankfort, Kentucky. The first stop was a tour of the old state capitol which was built in the 1800s. The next stop was to the Kentucky State Police forensics lab, where students witnessed actual case evidence. They also toured of the lab and learned how different types of evidence is processed. The final stop was to Rebecca Ruth Candy Factory, which first opened in 1919 and where students explored the history and preparation of the candy.

DNA and Genetics students work on a project.
DNA and Genetics students work on a project.

In some of our final classes, students are exploring, researching, and debating the use of GMOs in our food. To allow students to better understand the process of GMO production, students created their own genetically modified organism. They have also studied a variety of positions concerning GMOs, and on Tuesday they researched how food is being genetically modified throughout theworld to determine their own viewpoints. Additionally, to get a real-life application of the issue, students will take another field trip, this one to the local Chaney’s Dairy Barn to learn its view on the use of GMOs in its ice cream production. Everything the students have learned will aid them on Wednesday as they debate their classmates on their positions on GMOs.

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