Sunday, January 31, 2016

Chromosomal Socks Activity

Sometimes, all it takes to spark an idea is simply... a picture. While searching online for fun activities for our human genetics lesson, I saw a picture of a karyotype model. This model was created by using colorful socks, whereby each pair of socks represented a homologous pair of chromosomes. For someone who has an obsession for colorful, funky socks, I jumped at the opportunity of recreating this model with my students!

In order to recreate this model, my students had to complete a set of tasks. They were first provided with a huge pile of mixed-up socks, and had to work together in order to arrange the socks in pairs.

After arranging the socks in pairs, their next task was to figure out how scientists arranged chromosomes in a karyotype. Eventually, they came to the conclusion that chromosomes are arranged by length, except for the sex-chromosomes, which are found in the lower right hand corner. Using the model they created, my students then learned about the number and types of chromosomes found in human cells.

The picture (saved on Pinterest from I found online gave rise to the production of an entire lesson plan that was applied by all our Grade 6 science teachers. It enabled all our students to ask questions and investigate in order for them to learn about chromosomes.