Biotechnology STEM Activities for Kids (4 results)
Yogurt, biofuel, biodegradable plastics, and antibiotics are all examples of products
based on biotechnology research and manufacturing techniques. What else will we be able to create as we use biotechnology in new ways?
Have you ever wondered how scientists get a sample of DNA from a plant, animal, or other organism? All living organisms have DNA. DNA, which is short for deoxyribonucleic acid, is the blueprint for almost everything that happens inside the cells of an organism — overall, it tells the organism how to develop and function. DNA is so important that it can be found in nearly every cell of a living organism. In this activity, you will make your own DNA extraction kit from household…
Have you ever wondered what whipped cream, jelly, and milk have in common? Aside from all being tasty, they are also all made up of tiny particles that are dispersed, or distributed, in water. This type of mixture is called a heterogeneous mixture. Some of these have very interesting physical properties, such as acting like a solid and a liquid at the same time! In this activity, you will get to create Oobleck, a mixture that is made using cornstarch and water, and then explore these…
Did you know that you can change the genetic code of an organism? This technology is called gene editing or genetic engineering. Using gene editing tools, researchers can delete or modify existing genes in an organism, or even add new ones! With this ability, they can alter the way an organism—such as a bacteria, a plant, or an animal—looks or functions. For example, crops can be modified to become more drought-resistant, or bacteria can be engineered to produce medicine such as…
Did you know that the seaweed you've seen in the ocean or even eaten as a snack is inspiring innovators to imagine new materials? Large
brown algae, like kelp, contains polymers—long chains of molecules—that are more environmentally friendly than the ones in most plastics. These natural polymers (alginates) could eventually be used to create sustainable everyday objects. Try your hand at using a bit of chemistry to turn biodegradable polymers from algae into your own custom…
Your liver is important for cleaning up any potentially dangerous substances you consume. But how does it do it?—With a little help from some complex chemistry. Within your liver, as within every tissue in the body, many chemical reactions occur. Often these reactions require "help" to happen at a faster speed, and this can be supplied by enzymes—tiny types of proteins.
The liver uses specialized enzymes to help it break down toxic substances and make them safer for the…
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