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Reebops: A “Model” Organism for Teaching Genetic Concepts

Reebops: A “Model” Organism for Teaching Genetic Concepts

Completed Reebop models.
© Baylor College of Medicine\JP Denk

  • Grades:
  • 3-5 6-8 9-12

Students create imaginary creatures, called “Reebops,” to explore the relationships between genes and inherited traits. Using Reebops as a model, students learn how hereditary information is passed from one generation to the next, and how the physical appearance of offspring is determined from the combinations of genes received from parents.

By the end of this activity, students will be able to demonstrate why two parents can produce offspring whose characteristics resemble those of the parents but also demonstrate individual variation. There are several models of inheritance; this exercise will focus on one model of single-gene inheritance.

This activity is most appropriate with students in grades 5-9, but may be used with other grade levels.

Original source material © 1999 Center for Biology Education, The University of Wisconsin-Madision and Patti Soderberg.

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