South Orangetown Central School District

Last week, South Orangetown Middle School students in Janesa Martinez’s seventh grade science class actively prepared for their upcoming unit focused on cell division and genetics – completing a collaborative class model of DNA!

Individually, seventh-graders were assigned to create a segment of DNA by cutting and coloring pieces of paper labeled with its chemical building blocks. Then, students came together as a class to unite each segment, producing a visual demonstration of how organisms vary in DNA size, sequencing and genetic code.

“This activity gave students the opportunity to work together and determine how the pieces all come together,” said Martinez. “It was a great segue to our genetics unit and provided real-world connections which emphasized the importance of DNA in everyday life.”

Students create DNA structure chain