B6.2 Feeding the human race
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This activity is good to get learners thinking about and discussing the facts and issues of food production and the effect of a growing human population. It also allows the teacher to gauge learners’ current knowledge and misconceptions, informing lesson planning for the topic.
Learners work in groups of 3 or 4 and are given a set of cards with facts/information on. They must discuss their ideas and opinions within the group and sort the cards into two piles: true or false. The teacher can then discuss each card with the class. It is up to the teacher how much information is shared with the class at this point. You may wish to make a note of any issues and go into them further as they are taught rather than cover them all now.
As an introduction to the factors affecting food security learners can use the worksheet to put the five factors into images to help them remember them. You may then want to discuss these factors as a class. This activity is very useful for lower ability learners, but depending on time constraints, you may want higher ability learners to move straight onto this topic area without completing this activity.
Teacher preparation: photocopy learner worksheets.
This activity is a quick starter activity to get learners thinking about what features are beneficial in pea plants and start thinking about how farmers may do this.
As learners enter the classroom, have the PowerPoint slide on the classroom whiteboard. Learners can jot down their ideas as they settle in to the lesson.
This activity is for higher learners only and covers learning outcome B6.2e.
Learners work in groups of 2 or 3. Each has a worksheet that they can cut out the statements explaining the process of genetically engineering insulin, including the use of antibiotic marker genes to select plasmids containing the insulin gene.
This activity allows learners an opportunity to research in more detail the issues for and against genetic modification in agriculture.
Possible motions could include:
- GM crops are the way forward for agriculture
- GM crops should be banned
- Modifying genes is 'playing God' and should be stopped
- Research into genetic modification/engineering should continue because of its benefits to the human race.
This activity can be used either as a summary/homework for all learners or as a starter activity to give lower ability learners some ideas from which to form an opinion about genetic modification if a classroom debate is not suitable.
Once learners have completed the activity they can write a short paragraph stating their opinion about genetic modification, using some of the arguments they have grouped to justify their decision.
Teacher preparation: Photocopy the worksheet.
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