Tricia Sederholm

Learning genetics and physiology through models

2018 STEM Scholar
Peru, IN Peru Junior High School

Tricia’s Big Idea: Tricia’s class will use marshmallow “astronauts” (or Mallownauts) as models for studying genetics. Students will discuss what traits are exhibited by successful Mallownauts and differentiate between acquired and genetically inherited traits; investigate how Mallownauts reproduce by learning about different types of reproduction; demonstrate how genetic information is transmitted via meiosis; create 2D and 3D models of DNA; explore how Mallownaut DNA interacts with a virus; and use Punnett squares to predict inherited traits and selectively breed the perfect Mallownaut.


Interesting Facts: In 2017 Tricia won a grant to explore the Galapagos Islands during the summer. She brought excitement and information from the trip back to her Evolution lessons in the classroom.

In her own words: "I enjoy teaching because of the students. My favorite lessons are the ones that engage them in learning, regardless of the topic. Thank you for the chance to create this amazing learning environment in my 8th grade science classroom in little Peru, Indiana."