Inquiry-Based Activities for Teaching about Natural Selection: Dog Evolution & the Secret Ingredient of an Amazing Experiment

Paola Núñez, Pablo Castillo, Claudia Hinojosa, Carolina Parraguez, Hernán Cofré

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Abstract Teaching evolution is one of the most difficult tasks in biology education since there are a great variety of obstacles to its understanding. The inclusion of the nature of science and scientific inquiry, the connection with aspects of daily life, work based on scientific argumentation, and the use of empirical studies from current research have been identified as important aspects to include in teaching evolution. In this work, we present a series of three activities, which were developed after considering all the recommendations of the literature described above. The sequence begins with the example of the evolution of one of the species most loved by students: dogs. Through argumentation, students make their preconceptions explicit. After this, a long-term experiment about artificial selection in the silver fox (Vulpes vulpes) is presented (see Glaze, 2018) as part of the reflection on the experimental evidence that supports evolution. Finally, students are asked to generate a hypothesis about how they think the domestication process of wolves occurred, eventually resulting in dogs. The outcomes of implementation in high school classrooms and biology teacher education are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-99
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Biology Teacher
Volume84
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Evolution of dogs
  • Natural selection
  • Nature of sci¬ence
  • Silver fox experiment

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