Engaging with the Public: DNA Sequencing Workshops and Demos

Engaging with the Public: DNA Sequencing Workshops and Demos


By Jeremy Weaver

Welcome to the world of DNA sequencing workshops! At our hands-on genomics experiments, we provide you with an opportunity to explore and immerse yourself in the fascinating field of DNA sequencing. With a variety of resources and activities available, you can expand your knowledge and understanding of genetics.

DNA Day Essay Contest – Examining Important Concepts in Genetics

The DNA Day Essay Contest, organized by the American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG), is a prestigious competition that invites students in grades 9-12 from around the world to delve into important concepts in genetics through well-written and thought-provoking essays. This contest provides a unique platform for young minds to showcase their knowledge and understanding of genetics, while also encouraging critical thinking and scientific inquiry.

The submission site for the DNA Day Essay Contest is now closed, as students have eagerly submitted their essays for review. A panel of expert judges, consisting of prominent geneticists and educators, will carefully evaluate each submission based on scientific accuracy, clarity of expression, and originality of ideas. The winners of the contest will be announced on DNA Day, which falls on Tuesday, April 25, 2023.

Exploring Genetics Concepts Through Essays

Participating in the DNA Day Essay Contest offers students a valuable opportunity to explore a wide range of genetics concepts in depth. By researching and writing essays on topics such as gene regulation, hereditary diseases, genetic engineering, or the ethical implications of genetic testing, students gain a deeper understanding of the complexities and advancements within the field of genetics.

This annual contest not only fosters excitement for genetics among students but also helps cultivate their communication and writing skills. The process of writing a well-structured and persuasive essay enables students to articulate their thoughts clearly, present evidence-based arguments, and engage readers with their findings. Through this contest, the ASHG aims to empower the next generation of geneticists and encourage their passion for scientific inquiry.

Benefits of the DNA Day Essay Contest Details
Opportunity to showcase knowledge and understanding of genetics
Enhancement of critical thinking and scientific inquiry skills
Development of effective communication and writing skills
Engagement with genetics concepts through in-depth research
Recognition and celebration of outstanding essays by expert judges

Educational Videos – Visually Stunning Explanations of Genomics

The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) offers a collection of educational videos that provide visually stunning explanations of various topics in genomics. Produced by 42 Degrees North, these videos serve as valuable resources for educators, students, and anyone interested in expanding their understanding of genomics.

These educational videos cover a range of important concepts in genomics, presenting them in a visually engaging and accessible way. From lessons learned from the Human Genome Project to the impact of genomic medicine and the relationship between the genome and the environment, these videos provide in-depth explanations and insights into the world of genomics.

Exploring the Human Genome

One notable series of videos focuses on the Human Genome Project, delving into the groundbreaking research that mapped the entire human genome. These videos explain the significance of this project and how it has advanced our understanding of genetics and its impact on human health and biology.

Video Title Topic Duration
An Introduction to the Human Genome Human Genome Project 10 minutes
Genomic Medicine: Transforming Healthcare Genomic Medicine 15 minutes
The Genome Environment Connection Genome and the Environment 12 minutes

These videos not only provide educational content but also inspire curiosity and a sense of wonder about the intricate world of genomics. By presenting complex concepts in a visually stunning manner, they make genomics accessible to a wider audience and foster a deeper appreciation for the advancements in this field.

Strawberry DNA Extraction – Fun and Easy Experiment

Looking for a fun and educational experiment to do at home or in the classroom? Try strawberry DNA extraction! This simple experiment allows you to extract DNA from fresh or frozen strawberries using everyday household items. Not only is it a hands-on activity that engages participants of all ages, but it also provides a unique opportunity to learn about the structure and function of DNA.

How to Extract DNA from Strawberries

To extract DNA from strawberries, you will need the following materials:

  • Fresh or frozen strawberries
  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Salt
  • Water
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • A sieve or cheesecloth

Once you have gathered these materials, follow these step-by-step instructions:

  1. Mash a few strawberries in a plastic bag until they turn into a pulpy consistency.
  2. Add a mixture of dishwashing detergent, salt, and water to the bag and gently massage it for a few minutes.
  3. Strain the mixture through a sieve or cheesecloth into a clean container.
  4. Add cold rubbing alcohol to the filtered strawberry mixture and watch as the DNA precipitates, forming a visible, stringy substance.
  5. Use a toothpick or a glass rod to carefully lift the DNA out of the container.

Instruction sheets for the strawberry DNA extraction experiment are available in both English and Spanish, making it accessible to a wider audience. Get ready to explore the fascinating world of DNA with this easy and enjoyable experiment!

Materials Procedure
Fresh or frozen strawberries 1. Mash strawberries in a plastic bag.
Dishwashing detergent 2. Add detergent, salt, and water to the bag and massage.
Salt 3. Strain the mixture through a sieve or cheesecloth.
Water 4. Add cold rubbing alcohol to the filtered strawberry mixture.
Rubbing alcohol 5. Use a toothpick or glass rod to extract the visible DNA.
A sieve or cheesecloth

Classroom Outreach Modules – Engaging Students in Genetics

At [insert organization name], we believe in the power of hands-on learning experiences to spark students’ interest and curiosity in genetics. That’s why we created our Classroom Outreach Modules, specifically designed to engage students in the fascinating world of genetics. These modules provide educators with a comprehensive toolkit to deliver impactful lessons on various topics, including epigenetics, personalized medicine, and forensics.

Our modules are packed with resources that make teaching genetics interactive and engaging. Each module includes presentation slides, activity protocols, presenter guides, and handouts, giving educators everything they need to facilitate a dynamic classroom experience. Whether you’re a seasoned genetics teacher or new to the subject, our modules provide valuable support in delivering comprehensive and thought-provoking lessons.

Topics Covered in Our Classroom Outreach Modules

  • Epigenetics: Delve into the fascinating field of epigenetics and explore how environmental factors can influence gene expression.
  • Personalized Medicine: Discover how advances in genomics have paved the way for personalized medicine, tailoring treatments to individuals’ specific genetic profiles.
  • Forensics: Investigate the role of genetics in solving crimes and learn about the techniques used in forensic DNA analysis.

By incorporating our Classroom Outreach Modules into your curriculum, you can provide your students with a deeper understanding of genetics while fostering their critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Our resources are designed to align with educational standards and engage students in hands-on activities that bring abstract genetic concepts to life. Give your students the opportunity to explore the exciting world of genetics with our Classroom Outreach Modules.

Module Topics Covered Resources Provided
Epigenetics Environmental influences on gene expression Presentation slides, activity protocols, presenter guide, handouts
Personalized Medicine Genomics and tailored medical treatments Presentation slides, activity protocols, presenter guide, handouts
Forensics Genetic analysis in solving crimes Presentation slides, activity protocols, presenter guide, handouts

BLOSSOMS Lesson Video Library – Lessons on DNA in Various Fields

The BLOSSOMS Lesson Video Library offers a diverse collection of video lessons that explore the fascinating world of DNA and its applications in various fields. Created by teachers and aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), these videos provide valuable resources for educators and students seeking to deepen their understanding of genetics.

Lessons on Human Evolution

Within the BLOSSOMS Lesson Video Library, you’ll find engaging lessons that delve into the topic of human evolution. These lessons explore the genetic evidence that reveals our shared ancestry with other species and shed light on the processes that have shaped the human genome over time. Discover how DNA analysis has revolutionized our understanding of human evolution and the intricate web of connections that link us to our ancient ancestors.

Forensic Applications of DNA

The BLOSSOMS Lesson Video Library also features lessons that delve into the field of forensics and the critical role DNA plays in solving crimes. These lessons provide an in-depth look at how DNA evidence is collected, analyzed, and used in criminal investigations. Explore the techniques used in forensic DNA analysis and uncover the real-world applications that have made DNA profiling an invaluable tool in the fight against crime.

Lesson Description
“Unraveling Human Evolution” Explores the genetic evidence supporting human evolution and the interconnectedness of all living organisms.
“DNA and Forensics” Examines the use of DNA analysis in forensic investigations and its impact on criminal justice.
“Applications of DNA Sequencing” Explores the various applications of DNA sequencing technology, from medical research to agriculture.

Discover these and many other captivating lessons on DNA in the BLOSSOMS Lesson Video Library. Whether you’re interested in human evolution or the fascinating world of forensic science, these videos provide an engaging and educational resource for anyone seeking to expand their knowledge of genetics.

Ask a Biologist – Getting Expert Answers to Biology Questions

Have a burning biology question that you’ve been dying to ask? Look no further! With Ask a Biologist, you can get expert answers from professionals in the field. Whether you’re a student, teacher, or simply a lifelong learner, this platform offers a valuable opportunity to deepen your understanding of biology.

Ask a Biologist is a platform created by Arizona State University, where volunteers with expertise in biology dedicate their time to answer your questions. The platform is accessible to anyone, including K-12 students, and covers a wide range of biology-related topics. So whether you’re curious about genetics, evolution, or any other aspect of biology, you can count on getting accurate and reliable answers from knowledgeable professionals.

Why Choose Ask a Biologist?

  • Expert Answers: Get access to answers from professionals who have in-depth knowledge and experience in biology.
  • Wide Range of Topics: Ask a Biologist covers a broad range of biology-related subjects, ensuring that your question will find its expert match.
  • Accessible to All: Whether you’re a student, teacher, or just someone with a curious mind, Ask a Biologist welcomes everyone to participate.
  • Reliable and Accurate Information: The answers provided by Ask a Biologist volunteers are backed by scientific expertise, ensuring you receive trustworthy information.

So the next time you find yourself grappling with a biology question, don’t hesitate to turn to Ask a Biologist. With this platform, you can satisfy your curiosity and expand your knowledge with expert answers from professionals in the field.

Benefits of Ask a Biologist How to Use Ask a Biologist
Expert answers from professionals Visit the Ask a Biologist website
Covers a wide range of biology topics Submit your biology question
Accessible to all, including K-12 students Receive an expert answer
Reliable and accurate information Deepen your understanding of biology

Genome Timelines – Tracing the History of Genetic Research

Throughout the history of scientific research, numerous landmark events have shaped our understanding of genetics and genomics. These genome timelines provide an overview of the key discoveries, breakthroughs, and advancements that have propelled the field forward. Tracing the journey from Gregor Mendel’s experiments with peas to the completion of the Human Genome Project, these timelines showcase the rich tapestry of genetic research.

By delving into these genome timelines, we can explore the pivotal moments that have revolutionized our understanding of the genome. From the identification of the DNA structure by James Watson and Francis Crick to the development of CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology, each milestone represents a significant leap in our ability to unravel the mysteries of genetics.

These timelines also highlight the interconnectedness of genetic research across multiple disciplines. We see the convergence of genetics and medicine, with breakthroughs in personalized medicine and our understanding of genetic diseases. We witness the intersection of genetics and anthropology, as scientists study human evolution and migration patterns through DNA analysis. And we observe the profound impact of genetics on agriculture, environmental conservation, and forensic science.

Key Milestone Date Significance
Discovery of DNA structure 1953 Revealed the double helix structure, paving the way for understanding DNA replication and gene expression
Human Genome Project 1990-2003 Sequenced the entire human genome, providing a reference for genetic research and medicine
CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing 2012 Revolutionized gene editing by providing a precise and efficient tool for modifying DNA
Genome-wide association studies 2005-present Identified thousands of genetic variations associated with diseases and traits

Animated Genome – Understanding the Significance of DNA

The Animated Genome video is a captivating resource that offers a visually appealing and informative explanation of the significance of DNA. Through engaging visuals and clear explanations, this video takes viewers on a journey to understand the fundamental concepts of genomics. From the DNA triplet code to DNA replication and the practical applications of DNA in forensic and genealogical research, the video covers a wide range of topics that highlight the importance of DNA in our lives.

With its vibrant animation and concise explanations, the Animated Genome video is an excellent educational tool for anyone seeking to deepen their understanding of DNA and its role in genetics. Whether you are a student, educator, or an individual interested in genomics, this video provides a comprehensive overview of the subject in an engaging and accessible manner.

Key Concepts Covered in the Animated Genome Video:

  • The structure and function of DNA
  • The DNA triplet code and how it relates to protein synthesis
  • DNA replication and the importance of accurate replication
  • The practical applications of DNA in forensics and genealogical research
  • The significance of DNA in understanding human evolution and genetic traits

By watching the Animated Genome video, viewers can gain a deeper appreciation for the significance of DNA and its impact on various aspects of our lives. From unraveling the mysteries of our genetic code to revolutionizing fields such as medicine and law enforcement, DNA plays a crucial role in shaping the world we live in. Take the time to explore this captivating resource and unlock the secrets of the genome.

Benefits of the Animated Genome Video
Engaging visuals and animations
Covers key concepts in genomics
Accessible and informative
Provides a comprehensive overview of DNA
Useful for students, educators, and individuals interested in genetics

Genomics and Human Identity Lesson Plans – Exploring Genetic Variation

Our Genomics and Human Identity lesson plans are designed to engage students in exploring the fascinating world of genetic variation and its impact on human identity. Inspired by the renowned NHGRI/Smithsonian Museum exhibit, Genome: Unlocking Life’s Code, these resources provide educators with valuable tools to facilitate meaningful discussions and learning experiences in grades 7-12.

Lesson Plan 1: Human Traits and Genetic Variation

This lesson plan introduces students to the concept of genetic variation and how it influences human traits. Students will explore the differences in DNA sequences between individuals and learn about the various factors that contribute to genetic diversity. Engaging activities and discussions will help students understand how genetic variation shapes human identity and the intricate mechanisms behind inherited traits.

Lesson Plan 2: Investigating Genetic Variation

In this lesson plan, students will delve deeper into the study of genetic variation by examining DNA samples and analyzing genetic data. Through hands-on activities and data analysis exercises, students will develop essential scientific inquiry skills while exploring the relationship between genetic variation and human populations. This lesson plan fosters critical thinking and encourages students to consider the implications of genetic diversity in different cultures and populations.

Lesson Plan Grade Level Topics Covered
Human Traits and Genetic Variation Grades 7-12 Genetic variation, DNA sequences, inherited traits, human identity
Investigating Genetic Variation Grades 7-12 Genetic variation analysis, DNA samples, population genetics

By incorporating these lesson plans into your curriculum, you can empower students to explore the complex relationship between genomics and human identity. These resources offer a comprehensive and engaging approach to understanding genetic variation, fostering curiosity, and inspiring future scientists.

Teaching Evolution through Human Examples – Using Human Case Studies

The Teaching Evolution through Human Examples project, produced by the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, offers a range of teaching tools focused on evolutionary biology. These resources provide educators with valuable materials to engage students in the study of evolution using compelling human case studies. Through the exploration of fascinating topics such as adaptation to altitude, malaria, the evolution of human skin color, and what it means to be human, students can develop a deeper understanding of evolutionary processes.

By using human case studies, educators can connect abstract concepts of evolution to real-world examples that students can relate to. This approach makes the subject matter more tangible and relatable, fostering a greater interest and understanding among students. The teaching tools provided by the Teaching Evolution through Human Examples project include informative materials, such as lesson plans, presentations, and supplementary resources, that enable educators to effectively teach evolution in an engaging and interactive manner.

Through the use of human case studies, students not only learn about the mechanisms of evolution but also develop critical thinking skills and an appreciation for the complexity of the natural world. By examining how humans have evolved and adapted to various environments and challenges, students gain insights into the evolutionary processes that have shaped our species. These case studies provide a valuable opportunity for students to explore the interconnectedness of biology, genetics, and the environment, while deepening their understanding of the principles of evolution.

Benefits of Teaching Evolution through Human Examples
Connects abstract concepts to real-world examples
Enhances student engagement and interest
Fosters critical thinking skills
Develops an appreciation for the complexity of evolution
Explores the interconnectedness of biology, genetics, and the environment

Epigenetics Resources – Exploring the Epigenome

At our Genetic Science Learning Center (GSLC) at the University of Utah, we are thrilled to offer a comprehensive range of resources on epigenetics. Our goal is to provide accessible and engaging materials that allow individuals to explore the fascinating world of the epigenome. Whether you are a student, educator, or simply curious about the topic, our resources are designed to enhance your understanding of epigenetics.

One of our featured resources is an introductory video that provides a clear and concise overview of epigenetics. This video serves as an excellent starting point for those looking to gain a foundational understanding of the epigenome and how it influences gene expression. Additionally, we offer interactive tools that allow users to explore key concepts in epigenetics, such as DNA methylation and histone modifications. These interactive tools provide a hands-on approach to learning and facilitate a deeper understanding of epigenetic mechanisms.

Furthermore, we have developed resources that delve into the relationship between epigenetics and various aspects of life, such as nutrition, the brain, and inheritance. These resources offer insights into how epigenetic modifications can be influenced by external factors and affect our health and well-being. By exploring these connections, you can gain a more holistic understanding of epigenetics and its impact on human biology.

Whether you are interested in watching an introductory video, interacting with interactive tools, or exploring the relationship between epigenetics and other fields, our resources provide valuable insights into the intricacies of the epigenome. Join us as we unravel the mysteries of epigenetics and discover the profound implications it has on our understanding of genetics and human biology.

Jeremy Weaver