2. Making Babies - Assessment


  1. There are conclusion questions at the end of the handout.
  2. For homework, I assigned my students several pages from the book The Cartoon Guide to Genetics, by Lary Gonick and Mark Wheelis. Pages 37-55 deal with Gregor Mendel and inheritance patterns. The questions I asked include:
  • Who was Gregor Mendel?
  • In one experiment, Mendel crossed a tall pea plant with a short pea plant. What kind of eggs and pollen are produced? What is the genotype of the baby plant? What is the phenotype of the baby plant?
  • Next, he took these tall hybrids and bred them together. How many of these grandchild plants were tall? How many of these grandchild plants were short? Explain how it is possible for 2 tall pea plants to have a short baby.
  • Why were Gregor Mendel’s experiments important?
  • A brown eyed mom and a blue eyed dad have a blue eyed baby. What is the genotype of the baby? What is the genotype of the dad? What are two possible genotypes for the mom? Which genotype must she be to have a blue eyed baby? Explain why she must be this genotype.

Going Further

  1. Try the Dragon Genetics project.
  2. Have students model the mitosis and meiosis. My favorite mitosis/meiosis lesson is written by the Biology Lessons site from San Diego State University. The mitosis activity models the stages of mitosis with plastic utensils as chromosomes. Continue using the plastic utensil chromosomes to model meiosis OR you can add in the idea of crossing over by switching to modeling clay and yarn (see crossing over activity). Download the handout at the bottom of this page for an outline of the mitosis and meiosis process on which I had my students take notes.
  3. Make plant babies! Raise Wisconsin Fast Plants in the classroom and cross-fertilize different strains (hairy x hairless or tall x short). Study the inheritance of plant traits over several generations. For information on how to grow Fast Plants in the classroom, see the Raising Plants project in the Physiology Box.