7. DNA Fingerprinting - Logistics

Day 1+: Investigating the crime scene (may take up to a week depending on the complexity of the evidence)
Day 2: Creating DNA samples and replicating DNA
Day 3: Running the “gel” and analyzing DNA fingerprint results

Crime scene may be studied in teams or as a whole class. DNA samples are created and replicated individually. The gel is run and analyzed as a whole class.


  • Scissors
  • Adding machine tape (1 meter per person)
  • Meter sticks (or rulers)
  • Optional: Masking tape or blue painters tape to mark off a gel, loading wells, and lanes on the floor of the classroom, gym or hallway.
  • Optional: Additional materials to stage a crime scene. Be creative! For example, the kids walk into class to find the classroom pet kidnapped with a ransom note, a few human hairs (for a DNA sample) caught on the cage lid, and some fingerprints left behind. At my school, the gym teacher happily volunteered to be the culprit and all the teachers contributed an adding tape DNA sample for our analysis.

Classroom and possibly a hallway or gym to “run” your “gel”.