First Nations Biology: Genetics & Human Survival

First Nations Biology: Genetics & Human Survival

Lesson 3 of 8 in this unit

  • Cool+
  • Secondary
  • Year 10
  • Science
  • Biology
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures
  • Social
  • Indigenous Education
  • ...

Lesson summary

Exploring genetics through Indigenous Australians’ knowledge of heredity, evidenced by strict adherence to kinship, family structures and marriage laws.

Learning intentions:

Students will...

  • explore the role of DNA and genes in heredity and how understandings of human heredity from an Indigenous Australian cultural perspective compare to the current Western scientific understanding of genetics.

Success criteria:

Students can...

  • articulate the role of genetics in the survival of the human species
  • identify the critical discoveries in Western science regarding genetics since the mid-19th century
  • reflect on the difference between indigenous knowledge construction and Western science “scientific method”.

Lesson guides and printables

Student Worksheet
Cornell Notes Template
Teacher Content Info
First Nation's Biology Guide
Lesson Plan

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian Curriculum (v9.0) content descriptions:


Students learn to:

  • Explain the function of DNA and genes in heredity and predict patterns of Mendelian inheritance (AC9S10U01)

General capabilities: LiteracyIntercultural Understanding

Syllabus outcomes: SC5-15LW

Cross-curriculum priority: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Histories and Cultures

Relevant parts of Year 10 Science achievement standards: Students can explain processes that underpin heredity and genetic diversity and describe the evidence supporting the theory of evolution by natural selection.

Resources required


This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:

  • collaboration
  • critical thinking
  • curiosity
  • adaptability
  • ethical understanding
  • empathy
  • intercultural understanding
  • creativity
  • communication
  • reflection.

Additional info

Warning: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are advised that these lessons may contain images, voices and names of deceased persons.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium - Open-ended questioning, facilitation of class discussion, options for taking notes in different formats.

This is an original Cool+ lesson.

lesson saved in resources




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