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Online Course for Teachers: Teaching Evolution

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SESSION 6: How Can You Address Student Misconceptions about Evolution?

Elaborate Part A: Ms. Havlik's Strategies

Marilyn Havlik's 9th grade biology class in Chicago simulates what happens to the gene pool of a population over time.

Image of Marilyn Havlik

Read the background information on Ms. Havlik's class and school.

Watch "Teaching Evolution Case Studies: Marilyn Havlik" to observe the misconceptions students have and how Ms. Havlik handles them.

Marilyn Havlik
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Student misconceptions include: trait becomes more recessive, malaria cells evolve into sickle cell anemia, and a trait disappears when it is not "used."

Ms. Havlik's lesson demonstrates the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium principle. Read this description of the Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium principle and Ms. Havlik's lesson , then answer the following questions.


How did Ms. Havlik's students develop an understanding of population genetics and evolution in this activity?


What elements of Ms. Havlik's teaching strategy facilitate student learning of population genetics?


What is essential about Ms. Havlik's sequence of activities and questions?

Write up your notes to use later in this session.



Facilitator Notes 2 and 3


Next: Elaborate Part B: Comparing Strategies

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