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Activity 4-1: Cell Division - Double or Nothing

PLAN

Summary Students simulate the process of mitosis using pipe cleaners to represent chromosomes. They compare the cell before and after division to learn that no genetic information is lost during cell division, and that each new cell has the same number of chromosomes.

Objectives

Students:

\checkmark simulate each stage of mitosis using pipe cleaners to represent chromosomes.

\checkmark identify and explain the sequence of events in mitosis.

\checkmark determine that no genetic information is lost during cell division and each new cell has the same number of chromosomes.

Student Materials

  • Activity Report
  • Crayons or colored pens or pencils (same colors as pipe cleaners if possible)
  • 2 large paper plates
  • 8 pipe cleaners (2 long of color A, 2 long of color B, 2 short of color A, and 2 short of color B)

Teacher Materials

  • Activity Report Answer Key
  • Additional student supplies

Advance Preparation

Collect student materials. Prepare Enrichment 4-1 materials if you plan on extending this activity.

Estimated Time One class period

Interdisciplinary Connection

Art Students can illustrate the processes of mitosis on a poster or in a collage.

Prerequisites and Background

Students need to be familiar with the parts of the cell and the process of mitotic cell division.

Helpful Hints

  • Check student knowledge after each simulated stage of mitosis.
  • The first teams to demonstrate the correct sequence of mitotic stages can act as “Teacher Assistants” to help other teams.

IMPLEMENT

Steps 1-8 Have students work in pairs. Give one set of student materials to each pair. However, each student should complete his or her own Activity Report.

Monitor student progress to check students' knowledge after each simulated stage of mitosis.

ASSESS

Use the completion of the activity and written responses on the Activity Report to assess if students can

\checkmark simulate each stage of mitosis.

\checkmark identify the sequence of events in mitosis.

\checkmark determine that no genetic information is lost during cell division and each new cell has the same number of chromosomes.

Activity 4-1: Cell Division - Double or Nothing Activity Report Answer Key

  • Sample answers to these questions will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org to request sample answers.
  1. Compare the chromosome number of the parent cell with that of each of the two daughter cells.
  2. Compare the genetic information of the parent cell with that of each of the two daughter cells with single chromosomes.
  3. What is the importance of mitosis to the organism?
  4. You have 46 chromosomes in each of your somatic cells. If you cut your arm, how many chromosomes would be in each newly formed skin cell?
  5. Pretend that you are a double chromosome in the nucleus of a finger cell. Describe in a paragraph your experience going through cell division to become a new finger cell. Draw diagrams as you did on your Activity Report.

A suggested response will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org.

Which parent determines the sex of the child?

Activity 4-2: Meiosis and Fertilization

PLAN

Summary Students model each stage of meiosis using pipe cleaners to represent chromosomes. They compare the chromosomes of the parent cell with gametes to learn that the number of chromosomes is reduced by half. They use their chromosome models to simulate fertilization.

Objectives

Students:

\checkmark simulate the process of meiosis using pipe cleaners to represent chromosomes.

\checkmark observe and record the movements and positions of chromosomes during meiosis.

\checkmark recognize that the number of chromosomes is reduced by half.

\checkmark compare and contrast the process of mitosis with the process of meiosis.

Student Materials

  • Data Sheet
  • Activity Report
  • Crayons or colored pens or pencils (same colors as pipe cleaners if possible)
  • 4 large paper plates
  • Pipe cleaner set (4 double pairs) 2 long pairs (Each member of the pairs is made up of 2 long pipe cleaners for a total of 4 pipe cleaners per pair.) 1 pair, color A. 1 pair, color B. 2 short pairs (Each member of the pairs is made up of 2 pipe cleaners for a total of 4 pipe cleaners per pair. 1 pair, color A. 1 pair, color B.)

Teacher Materials

  • Activity Report Answer Key
  • Extra pipe cleaners

Advanced Preparation

Gather student materials. Arrange for video equipment if you plan to tape the activity. Prepare the pipe cleaner sets for each team.

Estimated Time One class period

Interdisciplinary Connection

Art Summarize the process of meiosis on a poster or a collage.

Prerequisites and Background Information

Students should have knowledge of the parts of the cell, especially the nucleus. Knowledge of mitotic and meiotic cell division is necessary.

Nondisjunction results when members of a chromosome pair fail to separate in normal meiosis and move into the same cell. Nondisjunction is more common in the production of gametes in females than in males.

The process of crossing-over is addressed in Enrichment 4-2

IMPLEMENT

Have students work in pairs. Give one set of student materials to each pair.

Step 1 Demonstrate the first step of procedure before students continue with Step 2. Students will discuss the questions from the Activity Report in pairs, but each student should turn in his/her own Activity Report.

Steps 2-11 Consider videotaping student simulations of the process of meiosis. Show these videotapes to the class at a later time, to other classes, at back-to-school nights, or to students who missed the class.

ASSESS

Use the completion of the activity and the written answers on the Activity Report to assess if students can

\checkmark simulate and describe the movements and positions of chromosomes during meiosis.

\checkmark recognize that the number of chromosomes is reduced by half during meiosis.

\checkmark explain the significance of producing haploid gamete cells.

\checkmark compare and contrast the process of meiosis with the process of mitosis.

Helpful Hints

  • Check student knowledge of meiosis, especially after completing Steps 5 and 7.
  • You may want to do procedure B (Fertilization) the following day.

Activity 4-2: Meiosis and Fertilization Activity Report Answer Key

  • Sample answers to these questions will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org to request sample answers.
  1. Compare the chromosome number of the parent cell with that of each of the four gamete cells.
  2. Compare the genetic information of the parent cell with that of each of the four gamete cells.
  3. How are the chromosomes of the offspring (Data Sheet #2) similar to the chromosomes of the parents (Data Sheet #1)?
  4. Given your response to the question above, do you think the offspring looks different from its parents? Explain.
  5. What is the importance of meiosis and fertilization in sexual reproduction?
  6. You have 46 chromosomes in each of your body cells. How many chromosomes are in each gamete cell? Are the gamete cells produced by mitosis or meiosis?
  7. Compare and contrast the process of mitosis with the process of meiosis including a) chromosome number, b) degree of genetic variation, c) purpose, and d) where it occurs.
mitosis meiosis
a. chromosome number
b. degree of genetic variation
c. purpose
d. where it occurs

Activity 4-2: Data Sheets 1 and 2 Answer Key Meiosis and Fertilization

A suggested response will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org.

What is the relationship between DNA replication and the fact that chromosomes are doubled when they begin meiosis?

What Do You Think?

In the models you made of the processes of meiosis and fertilization, you used pipe cleaners in place of chromosomes. You followed only two chromosomes, but imagine how the chromosomes in humans sort and recombine when there are 46 chromosomes. In what other ways were your models of meiosis and fertilization different from the real thing?

Make a list of the characteristics that make you, you. They can be both characteristics you see and characteristics in personality or choice of activities. Now separate those characteristics into two groups: those you think you cannot control and are part of your genetic self (nature), and those characteristics you have developed and you think you can change (nurture). How much of who you are is truly genetic, and how much of who you are is a product of how you were raised?

Review Questions/Answers

  • Sample answers to these questions will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org to request sample answers.
  1. What is the difference between mitosis and meiosis?
  2. Describe the process of meiosis.
  3. Why is meiosis important to the continuity of a species?
  4. Why are models important tools for geneticists?

Enrichment 4-2: Crossing Over in Meiosis Activity Report Answer Key

  • Sample answers to these questions will be provided upon request. Please send an email to teachers-requests@ck12.org to request sample answers.
  1. Why is modeling clay better than pipe cleaners for illustrating crossing over? What other materials can you suggest?
  2. What is crossing over?
  3. What is the value of crossing over to the long-term survival of a species?

Activity 4-1: Report Cell Division - Double or Nothing (Student Reproducible)

1. Compare the chromosome number of the parent cell with that of each of the two daughter cells.

2. Compare the genetic information of the parent cell with that of each of the two daughter cells with single chromosomes.

3. What is the importance of mitosis to the organism?

4. You have 46 chromosomes in each of your somatic cells. If you cut your arm, how many chromosomes would be in each newly formed skin cell?

5. Pretend that you are a double chromosome in the nucleus of a finger cell. Describe in a paragraph your experience going through cell division to become a new finger cell. Create diagrams as you did on your Activity Report.

Activity 4-2: Data Sheet 1 Meiosis and Fertilization (Student Reproducible)

Activity 4-2: Data Sheet 2 Meiosis and Fertilization (Student Reproducible)

Activity 4-2 Report: Meiosis and Fertilization (Student Reproducible)

1. Compare the chromosome number of the parent cell with that of each of the four gamete cells.

2. Compare the genetic information of the parent cell with that of each of the four gamete cells.

3. How are the chromosomes of the offspring (Data Sheet #2) similar to the chromosomes of the parents (Data Sheet #1)?

4. Given your response to the question above, do you think the offspring looks different from its parents? Explain.

5. What is the importance of meiosis and fertilization in sexual reproduction?

6. You have 46 chromosomes in each of your body cells. How many chromosomes are in each gamete cell? Are the gamete cells produced by mitosis or meiosis?

7. Compare and contrast the process of mitosis with the process of meiosis including a) chromosome number, b) degree of genetic variation, c) purpose, and d) where it occurs.

mitosis meiosis
a. chromosome number
b. degree of genetic variation
c. purpose
d. where it occurs

Enrichment 4-1 Activity Guide: Chromosome Cards (Student Reproducible)

Introduction

How much do you know about mitosis? Can you demonstrate your knowledge of mitosis to a friend? Using the instructions below and the chromosome cards, work with a partner to simulate the sequence of events that occur during mitosis. Be sure that you demonstrate events before and after replication of DNA, the sorting of chromosomes, and the cell division resulting in two daughter cells.

Materials

  • Resource (chromosome cards)
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Large piece of butcher paper to represent the cell

Procedure

Step 1 Put your initials on the back of each card in your deck of 46 cards. This deck represents the diploid number of chromosomes.

Step 2 Place your chromosomes in numerical sequence from autosomal chromosome #1 through #22 and then the sex chromosomes. Note the characteristic differences in size and position of the centromere and banding patterns among the chromosomes. This double set represents the number of chromosomes you have in each of your body (somatic) cells.

Step 3 Work with a partner who has a different colored set of cards.

Step 4 To represent DNA replication, take sticky tape and place your partner's set of chromosomes onto each of your chromosomes, pairing each homologous pair. For example, you will have green chromosome #1 linked to yellow chromosome #1. The tape represents the centromere. That is the amount of genetic material that you have in a somatic cell just after DNA replication, but before cell division. The difference is that each chromosome is joined at the centromere so that you have two sister chromatids linked together.

Step 5 Line up your chromosomes in the center of the large sheet of construction paper along the same plane (in single file order). Separate each of the sister chromatids that are taped together. Send one of each pair to each end of the large piece of construction paper. You can see that each half of the construction paper has a complete set of chromosomes.

Step 6 Cut the butcher paper in the middle. Now you have two cells, each with a complete set of 46 single chromosomes. What do you conclude about the overall outcome of mitosis in terms of chromosome content? Is each daughter cell the same?

Enrichment 4-1 Resource: Chromosome Cards (Student Reproducible)

Enrichment 4-2 Activity Guide: Crossing Over in Meiosis (Student Reproducible)

In this activity, you use modeling clay to simulate an event that occurs during meiosis and increases the possibilities for genetic variation in offspring.

As you complete this activity, think about why it is important for a species to produce a lot of offspring having many genetic variations.

Materials

  • Modeling clay (two different colors)
  • Activity Report

Procedure

Step 1 Use one color of modeling clay to make one double chromosome. Use the other color of modeling clay to make a second double chromosome. Each double chromosome should be the same length, but a different color.

Step 2 Place the two double chromosomes side-by-side. Remember that this pairing up of duplicated chromosomes is unique to meiosis and occurs early during the process. This process can occur with all of the double chromosome pairs at the beginning of meiosis. You will use only one pair of double chromosomes to represent the many found in the cell.

Step 3 Use your fingers to grasp the inner half of each double chromosome and twist until the chromosome ends break off. Next, take each broken end and join it onto the chromosome of the opposite color, as shown in the diagram below.

This process that you have just simulated, occurs during meiosis, and is called crossing over.

Enrichment 4-2 Resource: Crossing Over in Meiosis (Student Reproducible)

Meiosis is a special type of cell division that results in sperm and egg cells having half the normal number of chromosomes. In humans, each gamete cell (sperm and egg) contains only 23 chromosomes.

The chromosomes of the sperm and egg combine through fertilization to create offspring that are different from the parents.

An important difference between meiotic and mitotic cell divisions is the difference in the resulting cells. In mitosis the new cells have identical DNA with that of the parent cell. Cells produced by meiosis have half the amount of parental DNA and recombine through fertilization to produce genetic combinations of greater variety than that of the parents. However, how can two parents have several biological children, each of whom looks quite different from each other? If the children only received genes from each parent, what happens genetically to make each child a unique individual?

One way each child is unique is by the pattern of dominant and recessive genes he or she receives from each parent. Let's use eye color as an example. Although several genes are thought to be involved, we will ignore the complications and note that the allele for brown eyes is dominant over the allele for blue eyes. If both parents are heterozygous for brown eyes, that is Bb, then we know that there is a one and four chance that they could produce an offspring with blue eyes. Do the cross to see. We know that every time these parents produce gamete cells there are three gamete cells with the dominant brown gene (B) for eye color and one gamete cell with the recessive blue gene (b) for eye color on the chromosome that carries the trait for eye color. The expressed eye color (phenotype) and the genetic makeup for eye color of that child depend on which gamete cell from the mother combines with which gamete cell from the father. Children of these parents genetically could be BB, Bb, or bb, but only the child that is genetically bb will have blue eyes.

Beyond one single trait, think for a moment and imagine how chromosomes could arrange themselves to create many more different combinations of genes than are possible by the simple reassortment of whole chromosomes. Crossing over is a process in which genetic information is exchanged between the two members of a chromosome pair. When the chromosomes separate and are divided into two separate cells, the resulting gamete cell contains a unique combination of genes, different from the parent cell. Normally genes are not lost, but are switched between similar chromosomes. The new combination of genes gives rise to new variations of traits, different from those in the parents, which over long periods of time may allow the species to survive and reproduce more effectively.

Enrichment 4-2 Activity Report: Crossing Over in Meiosis (Student Reproducible)

1. Why is modeling clay better than pipe cleaners to illustrate crossing over? What other materials can you suggest?

2. What is crossing over?

3. What is the value of crossing over to the long-term survival of a species?

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Grades:

6 , 7 , 8

Date Created:

Feb 23, 2012

Last Modified:

Apr 29, 2014
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