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Meiosis Lesson Plan

Instructor: Josh Corbat

Josh has taught Earth Science and Physical Science at the High School level and holds a Master of Education degree from UNC-Chapel Hill.

In this lesson, students will explore meiosis. They will begin by comparing and contrasting it with mitosis (a commonly confused process) and move into modeling meiosis in a hands-on activity.

Learning Objectives:

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • compare and contrast meiosis and mitosis
  • model the process of meiosis and summarize its purpose

Length

60-90 minutes

Curriculum Standards:

  • NGSS Inheritance and Variation of Traits Standard: HS-LS3-2

Make and defend a claim based on evidence that inheritable genetic variations may result from: (1) new genetic combinations through meiosis, (2) viable errors occurring during replication, and/or (3) mutations caused by environmental factors.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.2

Determine the central ideas or conclusions of a text; trace the text's explanation or depiction of a complex process, phenomenon, or concept; provide an accurate summary of the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.5

Analyze the structure of the relationships among concepts in a text, including relationships among key terms (e.g., force, friction, reaction force, energy).

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.7

Translate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text into visual form (e.g., a table or chart) and translate information expressed visually or mathematically (e.g., in an equation) into words.

Key Vocabulary:

  • sexual reproduction
  • gametes
  • mitosis
  • meiosis

Materials:

  • Sheets of plain printer paper (enough for 1 per pair or group of students)
  • Markers or colored pencils
  • Scissors

Instructions:

  • Begin the lesson by reviewing the vocabulary terms sexual reproduction and gametes. Write class-consensus definitions on the board.
  • Start showing the video lesson: What is Meiosis? - Steps & Results. Have students take notes while they watch the video.
    • Note: For students that might have trouble taking notes during the video, a text transcript of the lesson can be found on the lesson's page.
  • Pause the video at 2:26. As a class, create a Venn Diagram of the processes mitosis and meiosis. Ask students to offer similarities and differences. Fill in the diagram accordingly.
  • Resume the video. Remind students again to take notes, as the phases will become important in the next part of the lesson.

Activity:

  • Provide student pairs (or groups) with a sheet of paper and some markers.
  • Student pairs/groups will draw and cut out all the necessary parts of chromosomes to visually show the process of meiosis. You can provide an example by drawing out some chromosomes if you like.
  • Once students are finished coloring and cutting out their chromosomes, they will use them to model the process of meiosis, naming each phase as they go.
  • You can assess pairs/groups in a few different ways:
    • Go from group to group and ask them to show you the process using their materials, or
    • Have students create a slideshow or video of the process using devices. PowerPoint, Google Slides, or the YouTube app can be used to accomplish this relatively easily. Digital products can then to submitted electronically.

Extension:

  • Have students explore the process of mitosis.

Related Lessons:

Sexual Reproduction: Inheriting Genes from Each Parent

What is Mitosis? - Definition, Stages & Function

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