Reflection: Real World Applications Pick the Risk: "Does It Run in Your Family?" - Section 1: Engage


Unfortunately the community where I teach is plagued by one of the most alarming statistics, the rate of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Genetics in combination with the environment is the root cause of why these diseases are wreaking havoc in communities across the nation. It's always shocking when 80% of my students have close relatives that battled or are currently battling one of these diseases.  

As a result of this background experience my students are automatically engaged when I'm able to tie my lesson to their previous experience. The level of engagement would've been substantially lower if I would've started class by saying, "Ok students today we're going to talk about diseases with genetic components."  Instead I started class by asking the question, "How many of you have close family members that have either cancer, heart disease, and diabetes?" This automatically initiates a cascade of events that increase blood flow (i.e. raising hands, discussion, memories triggered).  Finding real world applications that students are naturally inclined to are a good way of engaging students and creating a real appreciation to what science has to offer to our daily lives.

  Real World
  Real World Applications: Real World
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Pick the Risk: "Does It Run in Your Family?"

Unit 6: Inheritance and Variation
Lesson 13 of 19

Objective: SWBAT use a pedigree chart to learn about how chronic diseases run in families caused by multiple genes.

Big Idea: Most common diseases are caused by the combined action of multiple genes and environmental factors.

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