Monday, October 08, 2007

[TIPS] writing prompt - artificial life

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2007/oct/06/genetics.climatechange

This article begins:

      Craig Venter, the controversial DNA researcher involved in the race to decipher the human genetic code, has built a synthetic chromosome out of laboratory chemicals and is poised to announce the creation of the first new artificial life form on Earth.

Read the complete article. Have your students read it. Use it as a writing prompt.  Tell them to write about it in terms of whether or not they think its a good thing or a bad thing, and why? Whats the worst consequence of this idea? Whats the BEST consequence of it? Do you believe that there are or WILL BE things that well be able to do that we should NOT do? Is this something that we must legislate? Who is the watchdog for these types of new experiments?

Then, if youve got a Moodle class, set up a discussion forum in there and let the students discuss it further. (Perpetual writing prompts!)

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