Our 10th graders recently took to the mic to record podcasts as part of their unit on genetic engineering. For this unit, they learned about bioethics–the study of the ethical issues that emerge from advances in biology and medicine. Students worked with a partner to research the pros and cons of a specific topic within genetic engineering and then tapped into their knowledge, creativity, and presentation skills to create a podcast that describes the bioethical issues. Topics ranged from creating designer babies and animal cloning to GMOs and using technology to combat disease.
Students shared reflections on the experience and the process of learning and recording a podcast:
“I really enjoyed working with my partner, Binta Fall, and researching how GMOs influence our daily lives and wellbeings as humans!” – Anagayle Senn ’23
“From our Genetic Engineering Podcasts, I learned what it meant to be part of a balanced collaboration. Working with a partner allowed me to have an outlet for the ideas that I developed while researching genetic engineering. Being at home while my partner was on campus definitely should’ve been a challenge, but with all of the measures taken to adjust to our circumstances, everything went great! This project also opened my eyes up to the growing interest I have in biology. Overall, the experience was eye-opening, and I hope to do something like this again in the future.” – Binta Fall ’23
«This project was a really fun way to express what we learned and researched, it felt like real life and not just a research paper. This also made things a little difficult; we had to make something that anybody, not just our science teachers, would want to listen to.» – Marina Lea-Bernstein ’23
“Something that I found challenging about the project was recording the podcast while wearing a mask, but my partner Henry and I just projected our voices and enunciated, so we overcame the challenge.” – Steven Hall ’23
“I liked that the project wasn’t exactly a conventional science project: instead of doing calculations or explaining scientific formulas, we got to explore the issue of bioethics more philosophically. My partner Steve and I focused more on the moral implications of gene editing and what our world could realistically look like in 25-50 years. It made the podcast more interesting to research and record.” – Henry Yuska ’23
«Looking for credible sources was a little bit difficult, but it proved to be pretty manageable. We had a good time working on this project and we liked being able to research something we wanted to learn more about.» – Isaac Bierman ’23
«Throughout this project, I learned so much about IVF. Making the podcast with my partner was not only so much fun but a great way to cap off the end of the year. We got a ton of work done in class so we never really had homework which is always a plus. Overall, I absolutely loved this project and would do it again in a second!» – Layla Daud ’23
Well done, young geneticists! We look forward to what you contribute to the global bioethics conversations in the future!