Learning Goals


Michigan Content Standards


STANDARD B4: GENETICS
Students recognize that the specific genetic instructions for any organism are contained within genes composed of DNA
molecules located in chromosomes. They explain the mechanism for the direct production of specific proteins based on inherited
DNA. Students diagram how occasional modifi cations in genes and the random distribution of genes from each parent provide
genetic variation and become the raw material for evolution. Content Statements, Performances, and Boundaries

B4.2 DNA
The genetic information encoded in DNA molecules provides instructions for assembling protein molecules. Genes
are segments of DNA molecules. Inserting, deleting, or substituting DNA segments can alter genes. An altered gene
may be passed on to every cell that develops from it. The resulting features may help, harm, or have little or no
effect on the offspring’s success in its environment.
  • B4.2A Show that when mutations occur in sex cells, they can be passed on to offspring (inherited mutations), but if they occur in other cells, they can be passed on to descendant cells only (noninherited mutations).
  • B4.2B Recognize that every species has its own characteristic DNA sequence.
  • B4.2C Describe the structure and function of DNA.
  • B4.2D Predict the consequences that changes in the DNA composition of particular genes may have on an organism (e.g., sickle cell anemia, other).
  • B4.2E Propose possible effects (on the genes) of exposing an organism to radiation and toxic chemicals.

B4.2x DNA, RNA, and Protein Synthesis
Protein synthesis begins with the information in a sequence of DNA bases being copied onto messenger RNA. This
molecule moves from the nucleus to the ribosome in the cytoplasm where it is “read.” Transfer RNA brings amino
acids to the ribosome, where they are connected in the correct sequence to form a specifi c protein.
  • B4.2f Demonstrate how the genetic information in DNA molecules provides instructions for assembling protein molecules and that this is virtually the same mechanism for all life forms.
  • B4.2g Describe the processes of replication, transcription, and translation and how they relate to each other in molecular biology.

B4.4x Genetic Variation
Genetic variation is essential to biodiversity and the stability of a population. Genetic variation is ensured by the
formation of gametes and their combination to form a zygote. Opportunities for genetic variation also occur
during cell division when chromosomes exchange genetic material causing permanent changes in the DNA
sequences of the chromosomes. Random mutations in DNA structure caused by the environment are another
source of genetic variation.
  • B4.4a Describe how inserting, deleting, or substituting DNA segments can alter a gene. Recognize that analtered gene may be passed on to every cell that develops from it and that the resulting features mayhelp, harm, or have little or no effect on the offspring’s success in its environment.
  • B4.4b Explain that gene mutation in a cell can result in uncontrolled cell division called cancer. Also know thatexposure of cells to certain chemicals and radiation increases mutations and thus increases the chance of cancer.
  • B4.4c Explain how mutations in the DNA sequence of a gene may be silent or result in phenotypic change in an organism and in its offspring.

Goals

  • Students will be able to identify DNA as the genetic material and describe the experiment that proved this to be the case.
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* Students will be able to locate the three groups of a nucleotide: phosphate group, sugar, and nitrogenous base.
  • Students will be able to name the four nitrogenous bases in DNA and identify which ones pair with each other.
  • Students will be able to create a model of DNA, describe the three dimensional structure of it and identify the structure as a double helix.
  • Students will be able to identify that the backbone of DNA consists of the sugar and phosphate groups.
  • Students will be able to identify the interior of the DNA molecule as the nitrogenous bases and understand that the pairing of these bases keeps the two strands of DNA together.
  • Students will be able to create a genetic code, explaining that the ordering of the nucleotides or nitrogenous base makes up the genetic code, and that this code uniquely identifies a gene or organism.
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* Students will be able to apply the steps of DNA replication to a model.
  • Students will be able to describe the products of DNA replication and that the two resulting DNA molecules each contain one old and one new DNA strand.
  • Students will be able to explain the role that the complementarity of nucleotides plays in replication.
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* Students will be able to compare and contrast the structure of DNA and RNA molecules.
  • Students will be able to explain the different functions of DNA and RNA, specifically that DNA is a storage molecule, while RNA is used to make protein.
  • Students will be able to identify three types of RNA, mRNA, rRNA, and tRNA, and their function.
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* Students will be able to describe the steps of mRNA transcription and illustrate how it works using a model.
  • Students will implement the rules of complementarity of nucleotides in transcription using genetic sequences.
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* Students will be able to transcribe an mRNA sequence from a DNA sequence, correctly complementing uracil to adenine.
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  • Students will be able to state how mRNA leaves the nucleus and travels into the cytoplasm before translation.
  • Students will be able to explain the advantage of having DNA stored in the nucleus and having mRNA travel into the cytoplasm for tranlation into protein.
  • Students will be able to describe splicing and identify the organisms it occurs in.
  • Students will be able to identify the parts of a tRNA and explain how they function in translation.
  • Students will be able to show what an anti-codon is and explain its role in translation.
  • Students will be able to implement the steps of translation using a model.
  • Students will be able to translate an mRNA sequence using a genetic code table that maps codons to amino acids.
  • Students will be able to identify methionine as the amino acid mapping to the start codon.
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* Students will be able to explain the function of the stop codon and its role in terminating translation.
  • Students will be able to describe point mutations and show how they affect the protein product. Students will be able to explain the difference between a silent mutation and one that changes an amino acid in the protein product.
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* Students will be able to find a frameshift mutation and understand how that can change the length of a protein product as well as its constitution.
  • Given a mutated DNA sequence, students will be able to identify the mutation, analyze it to find the change in the resulting protein sequence, and speculate on the possible consequences.
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* Students will be able to describe chromosomal mutations and how they typicall result in the deletion or duplication of an entire gene. Students will understand that they are typically lethal.
  • Students will be able to compare mutations in reproductive versus somatic cells. They will be able to identify reproductive mutations as the ones that lead to differences in off-spring. They will be able to indentify somatic cell mutations as the ones responsible for causing cancer.
  • Students will be able to explain how mutations in DNA sequence may lead to disease in off-spring, such as sickle cell anemia.
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* Students will be able to explain how mutations in DNA sequence may not have consequences in off-spring.
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  • Students will be able to identify the three main types of mutagens: radiation, high temperatures, and chemicals. Students will be able to explain how exposure to mutagens can lead to cancer.
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* Students will be able to explain that there are DNA repair mechanisms and their role in preventing cancer.
  • Students will understand that DNA uniquely identifies an individual and explain how a DNA fingerprint can be used to solve a mystery or resolve a question regarding paternity.
  • Students will be able to investigate to find DNA samples and analyze DNA fingerprints to find matches.
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Student Prior Knowledge:
As this is a summative assessment, students will have been learning about genes and DNA for over two weeks. When they began the first lesson in the unit the prior knowledge the teacher hopes they have is:

Students should know that genes contain DNA.
Students should know that genes are inherited to offspring from their parents, therefore DNA is inherited from parents.
Students should know about genetic variation and that each individual has its own genetic makeup.
It would be helpful if students had previously heard of DNA testing as a way to identify suspects in crimes.
Students will know the different parts of cells, i.e. the nucleus, cytoplasm, etc.
Students should know the process and importance of mitosis and meiosis.

As the teacher goes through each of the lessons in the unit design, the students' prior knowledge will increase and by the time they are ready for the summative assessment their prior knowledge will include all the concepts covered in the lessons. These learning goals are described in the Learning Performances Section.

Possible Student Alternate Conceptions:
Replication and transcription may be confused as they involve similar steps but are completed for different functional reasons
Students may think that transcription and translation all occur in the nucleus because it is the location of DNA
Students may confuse uracil's role in RNA and thymine's role in DNA and mismatch them or forget that RNA uses uracil instead of thymine
Students may confuse the roles of mRNA, rRNA and tRNA
Students may view mutations only as negative and not link them to how organisms evolve

Quist and Holoweski - Genes and DNA Unit Design

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