Other Past Events

mtDNA PCR Workshop

Saturday, December 7, 2019
Learn about Mitochondrial DNA and its role in helping us understand human ancestry

About the Workshop
In this workshop, we focus on the unique characteristics of human mtDNA. This lesson and lab will provide students with tools to answer the question: Does your DNA tell you your race, ancestry, or both?

BABEC Program Managers Elizabeth Doggett and Michael Fuller will use NGSS-aligned lesson plans, curriculum and lab protocols in real time so that teachers will be ready to run this lab experience in their own classrooms after completing the workshop.

In the lab portion of this lesson, you will extract DNA from your cheek cells and amplify a segment of mtDNA by PCR. We’ll then visualize results using gel electrophoresis and learn how to identify deep ancestry by analyzing mtDNA sequences. This lab provides an opportunity for students to use multiple important biotechnology skills including micropipetting, PCR, and gel electrophoresis.

BABEC 2019 Fall Conference: Advancing Biotech Education

Saturday, September 28, 2019
Strategies for Aligning Biotech Lessons with NGSS
Keynote Speaker – Kirk Brown, Director of STEM Programs, San Joaquin County Office of Education
Kirk is Director of Science and STEM Integration/Innovation at San Joaquin County Office of Education. He is also the regional science-lead of the Curriculum and Instruction Subcommittee of the California County Superintendent’s Educational Services Association. Kirk was also a member of the NGSS State Review Team and the NGSS Science Expert Panel, helping California adopt the NGSS state standards for science. He also co-wrote the Revised CA Science Framework. Before coming to the San Joaquin County Office of Education, Kirk taught International Baccalaureate Biology and Biotechnology at Tracy High School for 25 years.

Strategies for Strong Workforce Program Funding
Learn how to engage with new state funding options for biotech education
The K12 Strong Workforce Program is up and running.
Panel discussion with program leadership and current district grant recipients about how you can tap into state workforce funds for biotechnology education.
Engaging Networking Opportunities
Convene with your colleagues from across the Bay
The letter C in BABEC stands for Community, and we take that seriously!
We will provide ample opportunities to network and connect with old friends and new contacts.

Alu PCR for a New Generation

Saturday, December 8, 2018
It’s a Bird, it’s a Plane, it’s Barbara’s Jumping Genes!
Bringing Scientific Spotlights and NGSS to an Old Favorite: Alu PCR

To what extent are we our DNA? How can human genetic variations help us understand our past? Join bioscience educators from across the Bay Area for a lively day of hands-on learning!

This workshop will be taught by Debbie Clark, biology & biotechnology teacher from Arroyo High School. She will help us answer these curious questions with our new NGSS-aligned retake on an 20-year old classic lesson by exploring the work of Barbara McClintock.

You’ll get to isolate your own DNA and use PCR to identify your genotype for a “jumping gene” located in a non-coding region of your DNA. Then we will determine your genotype frequency and compare it with data from other people from around the world.

Promoting the Next Generation of Genetic Engineers

Saturday, November 3, 2018
Bacterial Transformation & Protein Purification for All Levels of Students!
Do you want to excite all of your students about genetic engineering? Are you experienced with bacterial transformation, but want to take the activity to a new level? Join bioscience educators from across the Bay Area for a lively day of hands-on learning!

This workshop will be taught by Elizabeth Doggett, biology & biotechnology teacher from San Mateo High School. She will take you through various tried and tested techniques for bacterial transformation that are appropriate for all learners: ELL, general biology, and advanced biotech students alike.

Come try out our new protein color options for transformation. Explore our new introductory and advanced options. Purify the recombinant proteins with a simple procedure.

BABEC 2.0 – Curriculum Classics for the New Era!

Saturday, September 2018
Highlighting Diversity While Covering Biology Content
Jeff SchinskeKeynote Speaker – Jeff Schinske, PhD
Jeff’s research focuses on equity and inclusion in science classrooms, the underrepresentation of community colleges in biology education research, and faculty development. He will present the latest research into how conventional stereotypes of scientists adversely affect students by inhibiting diversity in STEM fields. He will also discuss tested classroom strategies for educators to combat these biases.

Is there a Genetic Basis to Race? Examining Human Variation and Ancestry using mtDNA

Saturday, February 10, 2018
Discover where you are really from! Learn about Mitochondrial DNA and its role in human ancestry.
Join us and learn how this curriculum makes teaching NGSS easy! We will be covering PCR, Sequencing, and SNPs.

Getting Started with Bioscience Lab Skills

Saturday, January 27, 2018
Out with the old, in with the New for 2018!
Have you been teaching life sciences for a while? Need to NGSS-ize your old lessons? Perhaps you’re a new teacher and looking for hands-on activities that align with NGSS? Join the Bay Area community of bioscience teachers for a day of hands-on learning in DNA extraction, micropipetting, gel electrophoresis and DNA forensics. Learn new NGSS-ized ways to make your lessons fun and engaging.

Bacterial Transformation with a NGSS Twist

Saturday, October 28 2017
Come join for a day of learning and collaborations
Join the Bay Area community of bioscience teachers for a day of hands-on learning and collaboration in bringing to your students a NGSS-ized Bacterial Transformation experiment.

Discover the Microbes Within!

Saturday, January 2017
Wolbachia PCR in the Age of Zika
Join us for a workshop about: Ecological sampling techniques, symbiotic microbes and co-evolution, and new approaches for disease vector control. Take these applications and engage your students in citizen science, real-world exploratory research, and learn relevant hands-on bioscience skills!

BABEC Annual Fall Kick-Off!

Saturday, September 10, 2016
Come celebrate the start of a new school year and BABEC’s 20th Anniversary!
Join us for day of inspiration science speakers, new curriculum presentations, and networking opportunities with other dynamic biotech teachers from across the Bay Area

Keynote Address by Dr. Bruce Alberts: Empowering Our Best Teachers To Make School Districts Wise
Scientific Talk by Dr. Jason Peters: A Primer on CRISPR, and Adaptations for the Classroom
Re-envisioning pGLO for NGSS moderated by Jim Clark, with Michelle Lefevre-Bernt and Jason Nicholson
3D BioPrinting Demonstration by SE3D

Introduction to Teaching Biotech

Part 1: October 7 & 8, 2016 @ Menlo-Atherton HS
Part 2: October 22, 2016 @ Skyline College
Bring Biotech into YOUR classroom!
Do you want to teach biotech to your students? Come to our informative hands-on workshop uniquely designed for new teachers and veterans who want a refresh. Learn from experienced teachers how to use equipment, deliver curriculum aligned with NGSS, and strategies for classroom management.

Biotech is my future and is seriously rad.
– San Mateo High School Senior

Mitochondrial DNA Sequencing

Saturday, March 5, 2016
From 8:30am to 3:00pm @ Skyline College, Building 7, Room 7204

23andMe: Modernizing Genetics in the Classroom

Saturday, January 30, 2016
@Skyline College, Room 7106

Come learn from the industry’s best in personalized genomics! The 23andMe academic team will demonstrate how you can use their resources to enrich your biology curriculum and make molecular biology interactive, current, and fun!

Cellege credit available from Saint Mary’s College. This event is free for active BABEC educators, thanks to the generous support of Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy.

Introduction to PCR

Saturday, December 5, 2015
@Skyline College, Room 7204

Learn how to introduce your students to PCR, issues of identity, and issues of privacy. In this lab module, you will learn how to perform this experiment and guide your students to success! This lab is recommended as a first PCR lab for high school students.


– DNA Isolation
– Electrophoresis
– Bioinformatics

College credit available from Saint Mary’s College. This event is free for active BABEC educators, thanks to the generous support of Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy.

Amanda Cherry
Paradise Valley HS
Phoenix, AZ

The curriculum materials are beautifully prepared and easy to understand-thanks for preparing such great resources that are easy to use.

Byron Gougoumis
Burton HS
San Francisco, CA

All Babec labs are well organised and modelled effectively with clear, helpful procedural instructions, easily transposed to the classroom.

Gianne Souza
Lincoln HS
San Francisco, CA

The online resources are SO well done! The best I have ever had. Very little modification to make them clear and easy to follow. I have done two BABEC lessons and they are so well made that they made teaching online fun again.

Heather Johnson
Burlingame HS
Burlingame, CA

When doing the BABEC labs I consistently hear students say they feel like "real scientists."

Marianne Gudmundsson
Glenbrook South HS
Glenview, IL

Well organized and scaffolded; flexible structure and can be used partially or as a whole. This unit can be used as is...superbly written and thought out...incorporates many skills and allows student collaboration and student choice/voice.

Rocky Ng
South San Francisco HS
South San Francisco, CA

Thank you for creating these curriculum materials. I am beyond grateful for the quality lessons, on-the-point figures/videos, and easy-to-navigate biotechnology curriculum.

Thi Ngo
Capuchino HS
San Bruno, CA

The level of support really made the whole process easier and encouraged me to continue incorporating biotech into my curriculum. Thank you for the live assistance during the labs and for responding to inquiries so promptly and with such urgency.

Anonymous Teacher

Really well thought out curricula. Great to see "old" activities that have been re-imagined with lots of consideration to NGSS.

Anonymous Teacher

This was the best educational workshop I have had the honor of attending, and I am so thankful.

Anonymous Teacher

Wonderfully executed. Strengthened my skills. Thank you!!

Anonymous Teacher

BABEC has such a strong positive impact on teachers and students - thank you for your amazing work!