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Genetics and DNA
Age 12-14: Concept 2 - Semester 2: Unit 1

In this unit, your child will learn how cells use DNA to pass information about inherited characteristics (such as flower color) to new cells. She will use Punnett squares and pedigrees to track and predict genetic changes over time and explore how factors such as mutation, adaptation, and natural selection ensure diversity. Finally, your child will learn about cloning and the controversies associated with this process.
by Steven D. Wall, M.A.
by Steven D. Wall, M.A.

Other Items You May Need

The Age 12-14 semester 2 science units require materials from the Semester 2 Science Kit.
$57.50 #1808 Age 12-14 - Semester 2 Science Kit


  • Able to read and comprehend novels at an 8th or 9th grade reading level
  • Able to write multiple paragraphs on a topic
  • Can write a five paragraph essay
  • Usually used by children in the seventh or eighth grade

Table of Contents

  • Lesson 1: The Importance of DNA
  • Lesson 2: Inheritance
  • Lesson 3: Generations, Probability, and Change (2 Days)
  • Lesson 4: Reproduction and Change (2 Days)
  • Lesson 5: From Generation to Generation
  • Lesson 6: Diversity and Adaptation
  • Lesson 7: Inheritance and Environment (2 Days)
  • Lesson 8: Cloning
  • Final Project: A New Organism (4 Days)

Summary of Skills

Moving Beyond the Page is based on state and national standards. These standards are covered in this unit.
  • Analyze the role of probability in the study of heredity by considering the role of each parent in transfer of genetic traits and analyzing pedigrees. (Science)
  • Distinguish between dominant and recessive traits. (Science)
  • Distinguish between inherited traits and other characteristics that result from interactions with the environment. (Science)
  • Evaluate evidence that human characteristics are a product of inheritance, environmental factors, and lifestyle choices. (Science)
  • Explain the impact of the environment and lifestyle choices on biological inheritance (to include common genetic diseases) and survival. (Science)
  • Explain the relationship between genetic variation and an organism's ability to adapt to its environment. (Science)
  • Explain the significance of genes to inherited characteristics: genes are the units of information; parents transmit genes to their offspring. (Science)
  • Identify cells as structures containing genetic material. (Science)
  • Identify examples and patterns of human genetic traits: incomplete dominance. (Science)
  • Identify some changes in traits that can occur over several generations through natural occurrence and selective breeding. (Science)
  • Infer patterns of heredity using information from Punnett squares and pedigree analysis. (Science)
  • Know that a typical cell of any organism contains genetic instructions that specify its traits. Those traits may be modified by environmental influences. (Science)
  • Know that cloning is a general term for the research activity that creates a copy of some biological entity (a gene or organism or cell). (Science)
  • Know that DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) is the genetic material of living organisms and is located primarily in the chromosomes of each cell. (Science)
  • Know that plant and animal cells contain many thousands of different genes and typically have two copies of every gene. The two copies (or alleles) of the gene may or may not be identical, and one may be dominant in determining the phenotype while the other is recessive. (Science)
  • Know that some medical conditions and diseases are genetic. (Science)
  • Know the differences between the life cycles and reproduction methods of sexual and asexual organisms. (Science)
  • Make predictions about possible outcomes of various genetic combinations of inherited characteristics. (Science)
  • Recognize that inherited traits of an individual are contained in genetic material. (Science)
  • Summarize the genetic transmittance of disease. (Science)
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