Career Day Help

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out Archives' started by Zanadu, May 4, 2007.

  1. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    May 4, 2007

    I've been asked to do a presentation at our local elementary school on Career Day about my previous career as a Molecular Biologist who did DNA sequencing. The grades are 1-6. I don't do well at describing my job to adults without losing them. I can't even begin to think of ways to bring it down to a first graders level. I was wondering if anyone knew of any good websites that explain subcloning, sequencing, or just genomics in general at a more kid friendly level. I've done some searches but get mostly middle school/high school stuff.
     
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  3. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    May 4, 2007

    I'm not exactly sure what you do, but kids can understand the basics of genetics... why some people have blue eyes and some have brown eyes, why some have freckles and some don't, etc. What if you take it down to this very basic level?
     
  4. Zanadu

    Zanadu Companion

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    May 5, 2007

    I was planning on starting with something like that and attributing it to our DNA. I'm not having much luck finding anything so I'm trying to think of things myself. I have an idea. I'd really like it if someone could give me their opinion of whether this is still over their heads.

    The idea:
    Liken DNA to a book of instructions that is in every cell. It's impossible to read this book because it is so small. My job was to use a machine that could read this really small book and make it into paragraphs that I see. Explain the alphabet used by DNA is different than what we use for words but we know a lot about it. The next problem is that all the DNA words run together. When we read a paragraph with all the letters together and no punctuation it makes no sense. So I look for sight words. They give me clues about the rest of the sentence and I work it like a puzzle.

    This is just a start. Any problems so far?
     
  5. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

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    May 5, 2007

    I think that's a prety good explanation... it makes sense to ME when I put on my 1st-grade brain ;)
     

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