Discovery Lab 2000, Professor Ennium has lab assistants and students that work with him
often. Today, one student named Phoenix has come to the professor with a problem.
The problem just happens to be about inheritedcharacteristics.
Lucky for Phoenix, I am quite
familiar with the study of genes. Let's take a look at his problem and see if we can
Phoenix has just been given a shoebox of old black & white photographs by
a relative, and one of the people in the photos looks just like him.
Click on the these arrows to travel
back and forth between pages.
This is Phoenix
Take a look at the pictures
Phoenix brought to show the professor. Picture A is Phoenix's
great-great-grandfather as a baby. Picture B is Phoenix as a baby.
What do you notice that is the same about the
To answer the question, place your arrow in the box and
"click" the mouse to get a cursor. Type in what you observe.
Click "Done" when you are finished.
What do you notice that is
different about the two pictures?
Do you have any idea what
the professor is talking about?
Click on the pea
plant image for more information about Gregor Mendel.
Why do you think Mackenzie looks
different from her brother?
Take a minute to guess what you think causes Mackenzie
to look different. Then take a peek here. Use the vertical scroll bar to
discover whether you were right or not.
Phoenix needs help.
What guess can you make about the picture of Phoenix's ancestor?
a hypothesis is a likely explanation for a problem.
Because of the relationship
between Phoenix, his ancestors,
and his siblings...
they share something. What is it they share?
Finish the following sentences by filling in the blank:
Place your answer in the text boxes, and then click "Check
Me" to find out if you are correct.
Each living thing has a set of _____
that controls its traits.
Individual traits are inherited as ____________.
Many characteristics of an organism are inherited down
through the generations from the genetic ________ of the organism.
Children will often resemble both their ___________.
What it all comes down to is this: The many
characteristics we have are inherited from our genetic ancestors.
I believe that we have helped Phoenix answer
Phoenix looks like his
great-great-grandfather because they are genetically related.
Phoenix has inherited some of his relative's
The same is likely true for you. You have
inherited some characteristics from your genetic ancestors.
Do you remember
Phoenix's family tree?
Try making your own
family tree sometime.
Consider what traits you
have in common with your ancestors, parents, or siblings.
Click on the
different members of this family tree. Answer the questions that relate to your own
Now for a little fun!
Imagine if you could monkey around with your genes. What would you get?
Click on the picture of the monkey-man to find the answer.
Click on the picture of the elephant-man to find the answer.
Well, our time here at the Discovery Lab has
ended. I hope you have come to realize the importance that your ancestors play in
the way you are today. We owe it all to our genes, and we owe them to our ancestors.
you would like more information on genes, try exploring the web site established by
The Human Genome Project.
If you are interested in exploring that site, make certain that a
parent, guardian, or teacher has agreed to extending this activity with futher
explorations on the World Wide Web.
Here are some of
the great things you will find online at The Human Genome Project:
Miniature search engine to explore the
List of genetic links
List of research sites with links
Virtual library of genetics
Discussions re: ethical, legal, and
Publications re: genetics
Sections for medical professionals
Fact sheets on hot issues such as cloning
Resources for teachers and students
Image, video, and audio files
and much, much more!
If you think you would like to explore the site,
type this URL
into your location bar in your browser: http://www.ornl.gov/TechResources/Human_Genome
or click on the genome icon below.
would like to explore other lessons in the Discovery Lab Series try out these lessons
found at the BEACON Learning Center: