Meiosis Lesson Plan + Free Music Video, Worksheet, Activity
Grade level: 7th-9th
Total lesson time: 45 minutes
Lesson consists of:
- 5 minute opening
- 10 minute introduction of material
- 15 minute guided practice
- 10 minute independent practice
- 5 minute closing
At the end of this lesson:
- Students will be able to define meiosis.
- Students will be able to identify the parts of meiosis verbally and visually.
- Students will be able to create a visual representation of the steps of meiosis.
- Students will be able to follow directions to model meiosis as a class.
- Anchor chart or board
- Pens or pencils
- Know/Want/Learn (KWL) Activity Sheet
- 12 Post-it notes in one color (numbered 1 to 12)
- 12 Post-it notes in another color (numbered 1 to 12)
- Meiosis Song Paired Activity Sheets
- Supplies for students visual representations (construction paper for flip charts, poster paper/anchor chart paper, crayons, markers, scissors, glue, etc.)
1. Opening (5-minutes)
Begin lesson by completing a Know/Want/Learned Chart (KWL) as a class. The purpose of the KWL chart is to understand what students KNOW, what they WANT to know, and what they LEARNED. Use your flip chart with these three columns and use the sample dialogue to guide your lesson:
“Today we are going to talk about Meiosis, which is a special process that takes place in certain cells in living things. Do you know anything about Meiosis already from things we have learned or talked about in class?
Think for twenty seconds, then when I say go, turn and talk to the people at your table about what you already know. Then we will share with the class.”
Allow students time to think, and share prior knowledge with classmates. Record things they already know on the chart you have at the front of the room (on the board or an anchor chart).
It is okay if students give ideas that are incorrect, because you can go back and address those at the end of the lesson. Next have a few students share what they want to know about meiosis and record on the second column of the chart.
Alternative: Instead of the teacher recording a class KWL, have students take turns writing what they know and want to know, have a student recorder, or give each student or group a KWL Chart (included in paired activities) to complete on their own or as a group.
2. Introduction to Meiosis (10-minutes)
Use the sample dialogue to lead into the introduction:
“Using a KWL Chart helps us understand where we are in learning about a topic. Meiosis is a big topic so let’s get started! Today we are going to watch a music video about Meiosis. We will watch it several times. During the first viewing I want you just to watch and listen.”
Show students the Jam Campus Meiosis Music Video.
Use sample dialogue:
“Wow, that video gave us a lot of information and important vocabulary! We are going to watch it a second time, but this time I want you to take notes on the bottom of your KWL Sheet. Jot down key vocabulary words, take notes on the process, any other important things you learn from the song or any questions you are left with.”
Show students the Jam Campus Meiosis Music Video again.
Afterward allow time for tables or partners to discuss and compare the things they learned. Ask students to work together while you play the video one final time to come up with a definition for meiosis, and brief step-by-step description of the process.
Use sample dialogue: “While the video plays again, you may talk to your table at a whisper to come up with a definition for meiosis, and a step-by-step process of what happens in meiosis.”
Show students the Jam Campus Meiosis Music Video again. After the video, review the definitions and processes students came up with.
3. Guided Practice (15-minutes)
Use sample dialogue: “You all did a great job interpreting the information from the Jam Campus Meiosis Video! We are going to review the definition and process of meiosis together. As I review the process on the board, make sure you are taking notes on your note sheet.”
Teacher reviews Meiosis using an anchor chart with similar features to the note sheet. You can either pre-prepare the anchor chart and uncover the parts as you go, or you can create the anchor chart as you go. A sample is included in the activities for this lesson.
Use sample dialogue: “Meiosis is the process of cellular division that occurs specifically in reproductive, or sex cells. Typically, the sperm and the egg. It is the process that creates sperm and egg cells. Meiosis is similar to another cellular division process called mitosis, but has some distinct differences.”
As teacher progresses through each step, allow students to help using what they learned from the video to tell what step or phase is next, or what they believe happens in that phase. Use prompting questions like the ones listed below to help:
- What is the next step in meiosis?
- What exactly happens in this step?
- How is this step different in Meiosis 1 and Meiosis 2?
- We mentioned X when we were discussing what we learned from the song, where does that come into our process?
Sample Meiosis Questions:
“The first part in meiosis 1 is prophase where the chromosomes condense, pair up, and exchange bits of DNA; this is called crossing over, or what else?” (Recombination)
“In Metaphase 1 the pairs line up in the center of the cell where in the next step they will be pulled apart. What is the next step called?” (Anaphase 1)
“In Anaphase 1, chromosomes are pulled apart to opposite spindle poles or centrioles, by meiotic spindles. Telophase and cytokinesis happen simultaneously, when the chromosomes are at opposite poles and a membrane and nuclei form to create two separate cells. Is that it?” (No)
“What do we have so far?” (two haploid cells)
“What do we need to have at the end of Meiosis?” (4 haploid cells)
“So what does that mean?” (The process continues; meiosis 2)
“Why are the new cells called haploid?” (They have half the chromosomes)
Next, have students work in their groups for 2-minutes to complete the second half of meiosis. Give students time to complete second part of meiosis and review briefly.
“Now that we have a good idea about how meiosis works let’s see if we can demonstrate it as a class before practicing ourselves.”
Before the lesson, prepare two sets of colored Post-it notes. For example, one set of red Post-it notes and one set of yellow Post-it notes. Each set should be labeled with the numbers 1 through 12 (for 24 total students). You can adjust the numbers for the size of your class.
Pass out Post-it notes randomly to students. Make sure they are clearly different by color or color writing. For example a student might have a red 1, and another student will have a yellow 1. Depending on class size you might ask for volunteers, but this can been done with a large group of students as well. Have students stand and mingle around the room.
(It can also be done with a smaller selection of students. 12 students given the numbers 1 to 6)
Use sample dialogue: “Everyone has either a yellow post-it or a red post-it. We are going to model meiosis as a class. Right now we are all one cell, but we aren’t organized. So let’s organize our DNA. Everyone with red move to the right side of the room and everyone with yellow move to the left side of the room. Great. Now we can see our chromosomes.
Who can tell us what comes next?” ANSWER: We condense and pair up in prophase
“Exactly, let’s all move to the center of the room and stand next to the person who has the same number in the other color. Let’s try to stay in lines so it is easy to see. Something happens when the chromosomes pair up in prophase. What is it?” (Cross over/ recombination)
“Right! If you are numbers: 1, 5, 8, 9, or 12 I want you to exchange spots with your partner who has the opposite color post-it. We’ve just exchanged genetic material! What comes next?” (Metaphase)
“The newly paired chromosomes line up at the center and prepare for?” (Anaphase)
“We start to pull apart back to the opposite poles. If you exchanged spots now you go with your new chromosome group. What’s next?” (Telophase)
“And now we have two unique haploid cells.”
If time and space allows, complete metaphase two with students. Number 1 through 6 form two new cells, and numbers 7 through 12 form the other two cells. Again have students guide the steps of meiosis using each step and describing what should happen.
4. Independent Practice (10-minutes)
*depending on time, you have the option to turn this into a multi-day project or homework assignment
During independent practice have student create a flip book, flow chart, or illustrated narrative of the meiosis process in pairs or a group.
This allows students not only to review and demonstrate the knowledge of the process, but also invites them to use their creative process to create a visual representation of meiosis. This can also act as a formal assessment of students comprehension.
5. Closing (5-minutes)
Use sample dialogue: “Let’s look back at the KWL Chart we started at the beginning of class. Do you see anything we thought we knew that wasn’t quite right?”
Make corrections and have students add to what they learned. If time permits, have a few students share their visual representation of meiosis, or have groups pair up and share with one another.
Common Core State Standards (CCSS)
- CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.6-8.7: Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table).
- 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.
- 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.6-8.3: Follow precisely a multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks.
- CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.9-10.3: Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks, attending to special cases or exceptions defined in the text.
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