Human Genetic Variation
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Möbius strip
Figure 12 - A Möbius strip is a one-sided, one-edged loop. Test this by making a loop with five twists. With a marker, draw a continuous line around the strip, starting at the seam. Your line should pass along "both" sides of the paper before you return to your starting point, even though you do not lift your marker off the paper as you draw. Then run your marker along the edge, again starting at the seam. You should see that the strip also contains only one edge. Loops with odd numbers of twists are Möbius strips; loops with even numbers of twists are not. In this module, we use a five-twist Möbius strip as a metaphor for the relationship between basic science and personal and public health.

PDF Files for PrintingUsing the Student Activities

The heart of this module is the set of five activities that follow. These activities are the vehicles that we hope will carry important concepts related to human genetic variation to your students. To review the concepts in detail, refer to Figure 7 in Implementing the Module.

As you scan the activities, you will find that each contains several major features.

At a Glance gives you a convenient overview of the activity.

The Introduction places the activity in a context and provides a short overview of its key components.

Materials and Preparation provides instructions for collecting and preparing the materials required to complete the activity.

Procedure outlines the activity's steps and provides implementation suggestions and answers to questions. Annotations in the margins, identified by icons, provide specific hints about helping students see connections between basic science and personal and public health (the Möbius-strip icon), assessing student understanding (the check-mark icon), and focusing students' attention on the activity's major concepts during its closing steps (the "completing-the-puzzle" icon).

Potential Extensions describes ways you can extend or enrich the activity.

All of the Masters required to teach the activities are located in a separate section at the end of the module.

Two of the activities (The Meaning of Genetic Variation and Making Decisions in the Face of Uncertainty) use the Human Genetic Variation Web site. A third activity (Molecular Medicine Comes of Age) includes an Internet-based option for teachers who wish to use it. For information about using the Web site, see the section, "Using the Human Genetic Variation Web Site in the Classroom" in Implementing the Module. If you do not have enough computers equipped with Internet access available to conduct these activities with your students, you can use the print-based alternatives.

Figure 13 outlines a plan for preparing for and completing the five activities that follow. Refer to the caption for specific preparation instructions. The plan assumes you will teach the activities on consecutive days. If this is not your plan, adjust the timing of your preparation accordingly.

Timeline for teaching the module.
Figure 13 - Timeline for teaching the module. Before you begin teaching this module, review this timeline. Instructions for computer set-up are located in the section section, "Using the Human Genetic Variation Web site in the Classroom," those for preparing other required materials are in Materials and Preparation in each activity. D
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