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Activity

Hair Analysis with stuffie hair (activity for Honey Mystery 1)

Summary: 
Students match samples of hair found at a "crime scene" with those of stuffed animals, to narrow down the suspects of a crime.
Science content (2016 curriculum): 
Biology: Features, Adaptations of Living Things (K, 1, 3, 7)
Science topic (2005 curriculum connection): 
Life Science: Characteristics of Living Things (grade K)
Life Science: Animal Growth and Changes (grade 2)
Life Science: Human Body (grade 5)
image
image
Materials: 
  • stuffies to get fur from (I used the black cat and Pooh bear
  • small baggies (1"x1" fit in the squares on the worksheet)
  • scissors to cut fur from stuffies, use a tiny piece for each baggie, so it can barely be seen
  • sharpie to write the sample number on the fur bags
  • worsheet (see attachment)
  • small squares of black paper
  • magnifiers
Procedure: 

(Background: There has been a crime among the stuffed animals. Pooh's honey was stolen while he was sleeping. The empty jar was found near him. The investigators collected hair samples from the honey jar and put them in baggies.)

Each student is given a worksheet, and asked to record the hair colours of each stuffed animal that was found in the vicinity of the crime scene. See attached worksheet and image.

Each student is given two baggies, containing hair samples 1 and 2 respectively from the crime scene.
Students hold the samples against white paper and black paper and use a magnifier to determine the colour of each hair. They will need to look closely as there was not much hair recovered from the crime scene.
They tape the baggie next to the recorded hair colour.

By matching the hair samples from the crime scene with the hair colours of each stuffie, students figure out which of the stuffies are still suspects. (The black and brown bear, and also both cats as the brown hair could have been Poohs.)

Attached documents: 
Grades tested: 
Gr K
Gr 1
Gr 4
Gr 5
Teacher: 
Donna Greening
Ingrid
Jane Kemp
Teaching site: 
General Gordon Elementary
ingridscience afterschool
Activity originally developed and delivered: 

Gordon Elementary