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National DNA Day Small Awards: 2010

The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) and the Education and Community Involvement Branch have created small-funding opportunities for groups to create National DNA Day programs in their community.

For National DNA Day 2010, three DNA Day Small Awards were made to:

Hawai'i Department of Health Genetics Program

The Hawai'i Department of Health Genetics Program is strongly committed to providing quality genetics education to Hawai'i's residents.

To celebrate DNA Day 2010, the Genetics Program will utilize partnerships forged with various educators throughout the islands to engage our youth in a day of learning. We have planned a full day of activities, educational interactions, and learning opportunities for high school students and teachers from across the state. Approximately 125 participants will gather on Oahu to experience a day of fun-filled genetics activities.

DNA Activity Day 2010 will include presentations by the Hawai'i Police Department Forensics Unit, the Hawai'i Innocence Project, and a panel of clinical genetics experts. Students will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on break-out sessions, browse exhibit booths, present their own genetics projects, take part in a scavenger hunt for genetics clues, and complete a reflection/evaluation upon their return to their home school.

The goals of DNA Activity Day 2010 are to:

  1. Increase awareness of genetics and career opportunities.
  2. Build upon the current foundation for genetics education in Hawai'i.
  3. Encourage students and teachers to apply genetics to current curriculum standards.

Northwest Association for Biomedical Research

DNA-LEAP (Life Sciences Education Advancement Partnership) is a day-long symposium providing professional development and curriculum related to genetics and genomics to middle and high school science teachers, presented by a collaboration of outreach providers.

The Northwest Association for Biomedical Research, in collaboration with several Pacific Northwest science education outreach programs, will host a DNA Day in 2010 to provide a range of DNA-related professional development for middle and high school science teachers. This symposium will introduce 40 educators to curricular materials that focus on genetics, genomics, and bioethics.

Teachers will also be oriented to partner programs and the extensive resources available for teaching DNA-related topics, many of which were developed with prior federal funding. The day-long event, entitled DNA-LEAP, will consist of several shorter workshops featuring DNA-related curriculum developed by the LEAP partners that teachers may then take back to their classrooms. The overall goal is to expose secondary education audiences to activities that highlight the importance of genetics and genomics.

LEAP partners include: Seattle Biomedical Research Institute, BioQuest Program; University of Washington Department of Genome Sciences Education Outreach; Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Science Education Partnership; and the Northwest Association for Biomedical Research.

Carnegie Academy for Science Education (CASE) Carnegie Institution for Science

Beading Into Bioinformatics, Carnegie Academy for Science Education. Scientists use models of clay, wire, metal and color to represent and even track biochemicals like the four nucleotide bases of DNA. The genetic code uses abbreviations as well, and the 20 letters cover all but six of the English alphabet! For these DNA DAY sessions, there's no water needed, just internet access! And a choice of four colors to bead into a ring or bracelet or buttonhole support ribbon.

Participants can string the four bead colors in any order - even patterns! - and then discover what their sequence represents in the GenBank database of the National Center for Biotechnology Information. Or, they can look up a nucleotide sequence for a gene of interest, then bead a segment of that sequence. OR, they can use the genetic code (for amino acids) to spell out a phrase, such as: "ScienceisGreat" or "ILikeMyGENES."

Participants can then visit www.genome.gov where they will find a glossary, definitions and explanations of terms, creating learning pathways they can continue at home. Plus, they now own their creations and can teach others with materials that are readily available at craft stores.

Last updated: July 16, 2013