UPDATE: Students make excellent gains on this material the second time around! Student scores rose by 12-25 percentile points in each class, on average, suggesting that our very focused vocabulary attack was critical to student success. Thanks for helping me to become a better teacher!
Lesson Days: 36-38, Boss Battle on Day 38 to look for gains!
Lesson Objective: celebrate our successes in class so far, review our weaknesses and review those topics; for the most part, the topics covered in our genetics unit have held the most problems.
See data breakdown by homeroom tomorrow. You’ll notice that the weakest Boss Battle Scores occurred with the genetics standard, SC.7.L.16.
We’ve had a cumulative final exam and mid-term since this data was generated on genetics/Punnett Squares/cell division, and the data are repeated itself over time… we’ve achieved both repetition and replication of this data trend… good science!
I’m drilling down on the cause of this weakness, and I believe it is mostly linked to vocabulary acquisition. Students have shown me that they can build a Punnett Square when provided just the tool, but taking a word problem and deciphering the information to use the tool is another story.
Here’s an example:
Goombas in Super Mario Bros. carry two basic formations: they can have wings or not. Wings, it turns out are a dominant trait in Goombas. If two Goombas that are homozygous recessive for the wing gene mated, what are
1.) The possible genotypes their offspring could carry?
2.) The phenotypes that those genotypes would produce?
3.) The chance each different genotype would have of being created?
It’s enough to make your head spin.
Not to fear, Avatars! We’ll be working to review that DNA, and the ol’ Loremaster has some tricks up his sleeves to help out with that.