Monthly Archives: November 2015

It begins!

Up to this point in our project, students were involved in finding turtles, weighing them, naming them, photographing them, and determining the spots where they preferred to roam. No sequencing or data analysis… up until yesterday, when they actually started analyzing genetic data, which was a major step in the right direction. Many hands eager to get involved! I decided that, for this project

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What are microsatellites?

An even better question might be, “Why teach about DNA?” Why teach elementary-level children a concept that most don’t learn until high school? For an answer, I’ll say that I like to challenge my students, and prompt them to consider hard questions. Even though children don’t always realize that Jurassic Park was a movie (and a book) about the promise and perils of genetic engineering (and

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Answering the big questions

“But Mr. Eastburn… which ones are the parents?” This is one of the most common questions that I hear at Riverside Elementary School, where I have worked the past four years teaching science. For as long as anyone can remember (a long time in our collective memory), there has been a captive population of box turtles in our enclosed courtyard, and ever since I

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