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This karyotyping activity clearly shows that gametes have 23 chromosomes which combine to make a baby karyotype with 46. Nicely illustrates sexual reproduction for middle school students without getting too awkward!
This activity reinforces:
- Sexual reproduction requires two parents.
- Gametes have half the number of chromosomes as the parents.
- Gametes combine to make a zygote in the process of fertilization.
- Chromosomes have homologous pairing and differ based on size and banding pattern.
- A karyotype is an organized map of chromosomes.
- Different organisms have different numbers of chromosomes.
- XX makes a female offspring and XY makes a male offspring.
In this activity, students will:
- Read background information about sexual reproduction, including the terms gametes, zygote, fertilization, sperm, egg, and homologous chromosomes.
- Obtain an egg and a sperm graphic. (We do this activity in pairs, so one student gets the male gamete and the other gets a female gamete.)
- Cut out the chromosomes and match the homologous pairs using a provided key.
- Paste the homologous chromosome pairs onto their karyotype page and identify whether it is male or female.
- Answer follow-up questions on a worksheet.
- Introductory reading passage with human chromosome key
- Egg and sperm graphics (2 versions to make male and female babies)
- Blank karyotype
- Follow-up questions worksheet
- Helpful teacher notes
- Science & Engineering Practice: Developing and using models
- You may also find our Asexual & Sexual Reproduction Test helpful.
- Please note: This resource is NOT editable.
- Answer key included.
- Check out more resources in the asexual and sexual reproduction section of our shop!
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