Lesson One

What is DNA?


“Bringing Biotechnology for Life” provides students a journey through the understanding of biotechnology with an emphasis on food production.

Length: 1 hour

Students will be able to:

  • Identify the primary components in a DNA structure.
  • Describe the role of DNA in trait inheritance.

Next Generation Science Standards Addressed:

  • Disciplinary Core Ideas:
    1. LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms
    2. LS3.A Inheritance of Traits
    3. LS3.B Variation of Traits

  • Practices:
    Asking Questions

  • Cross-Cutting Concepts:
    Complex and microscopic structures and systems can be visualized, modeled, and used to describe how their function depends on the relationships among its parts, therefore complex natural structures / systems can be analyzed to determine how they function.

Suggested Video

The Double Helix


James Watson and Francis Crick collected and interpreted key evidence to determine that DNA molecules take the shape of a twisted ladder—a double helix. The film presents the challenges, false starts, and eventual success of their bold chase, culminating in the classic 1953 publication in Nature on the structure of DNA.

View on Biointeractive Website

Play Video