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Lesson 3

How Hairy is a Population of Radish Plants?

Big Idea:

Variation in traits can be measured. A graph gives us a picture that describes the trait variation collectively within a population.



Students observe and measure the hairiness trait in a population of radish plants. They count hairs on close-up photographs of individual plant petioles and record their data. The class creates a graph to summarize class data and use the graph to describe what it tells us about the distribution of hairiness trait variants in this population.

Materials to Have Ready

​​For each student:

Notebook page 8

2 radish photos from the class set. There are 49 photos in the set, so this number is intended for a ~25 person class. If you have a smaller class, distribute the photos as evenly as possible. Some or all students may get more than 2

2 sticky notes to record the number of hairs observed on each radish plant photo

For each small group:​

A selection of live plant material selected because the leaves and stems are "hairy"

For the class:​

A graph template (see lesson plan)

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