Summer SAVY 2019: Session 1, Day 3 – Forensic Science (Rising 1st/2nd)
As you might have guessed, we had another visitor in the crime scene room last night! This time, the person who was there left a note, in cursive, saying that they heard that my computer was missing and hoped I get it back. It was signed, “Me”. The crime scene team thought the “Me” closing was suspicious and that we should see if we can trace the note. We will be on the lookout for a suspect who writes notes in cursive and we will try to trace the pen that was used. Fortunately, we have a member on the crime team who writes well in cursive writing, so she will be on the lookout!
Since we have used chromatography technique as a means to try to crack the case, and also the acid and base test, we learned another important technique that forensic scientists use, DNA! To begin our “learn more” step, about DNA, first we shared what we already know, (one student said he knew that no one has the same DNA), and then we listed what we need to know concerning DNA. After filling our brains with knowledge, we decided to extract our own DNA! We were all shocked to see that truly, everyone’s DNA looked different when we looked! Here’s what we did: dissolved 500mL of water and a tbsp. of salt, into a clear cup, then took put 3 tblsp out of the cup and transferred to another clear cup, placed the liquid in our mouths, and gargled in our cheeks inside mouth for 2 minutes, then spit it back into the same clear cup, and then added 1 drop clear dish soap, mixed gently to avoid bubble, added a mixture of 100Ml of alcohol and three drops of blue food coloring. Then we waited 2.5 minutes, then we looked at our DNA that was suspended on the surface and some were even clumped in areas.
To make sure we understood the patterns in DNA, we then made DNA models with gummy bears and twizzlers! They are in the student’s backpacks and can be eaten at home with your permission. I think we have a very understanding of how important DNA is to solving crimes. We were able to find the DNA of our suspects too, (from our data base), so they have now been added to our case files. Tomorrow we will be exploring the home run hit, that fingerprinting DNA gives us as a much more reliable piece of evidence.