The Mammalian Molecular Clock Model

Animals don't read clocks, so how do they know when it is time for eating, sleeping, and other cyclical needs? Viewers watch an animation of the genes and the molecular clocks inside most mammals. They compare the difference in wild versus mutant animals of the same species, which opens up a discussion of the molecular clock in humans and the variations that exist.

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CCSS: Adaptable
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Instructional Ideas
  • Discuss the difference between learned and innate behaviors
  • Create a timeline for a few different mammals' daily patterns
Classroom Considerations
  • Relies on prior knowledge of genes, cycles, and molecules
  • Provides a great list of references for those wishing to learn more
  • Offers closed captioning for the hearing impaired
  • None