Genetic Disorder Role Play Activity
- Teacher: Sandra McCreight
- Subject: Decision making
- Grade Level(s): 9 10
- Target Audience: Genetics
- Materials Needed: March of Dimes genetic condition sheets,
- Class Time: 3 to 4 45 minute class periods
- Brief Summary: As students begin to understand how inheritance patterns operate, they realize that sometimes something goes wrong. Alleles can be inherited that have a deleterious effect upon an offspring. Nondisjunction can (and does)
occur also having negative effects on the offspring. Students are now confronted by their own feelings and belief systems as to what to do in these situations. This activity affords them the chance to explore feelings and beliefs within a framework that is non-threatening to themselves or others. It also allows them the opportunity to use ethical decision-making models.
- Student Objective(s): Reinforcement of inheritance patters.
Non-disjunction: how it occurs and its consequences. Role playing to enhance above concepts. Use of Decision-Making Models.
- Integration (tying it all together): All students are capable of
understanding basic genetic inheritance patterns. This activity takes them the further
step to understand what happens when mistakes occur. These are often long-term consequences that can affect a family when confronted by the situation. The use of a decision-making model affords students the chance to explore and develop a decision that is "best" for them. This model can be used in many ways in their lives.
- Description of Activities:
- 1.) Students are divided into groups of
three, four or five.
- 2.) Roles are assigned as follows: Group of 3: doctor, mother,
father; Group of 4: doctor, mother, father, sibling; Group of 5: doctor, mother, father,
- 3.) Students develop presentations explaining disorders,
inheritance pattern, expenses involved, and options. Each family member must participate
given their unique perspective to the family decision.
- 4.) Use a decision-making model
as a class activity. SODAS is good for first time use.
- 5.) Have each group now do
the decision-making model for another group's dilemma.
- 6.) Discuss as a class why there
are options to each situation and how diagnosis occurs using genetic counseling.
- Further Information and References: March of Dimes
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