Easter Bush Science Outreach Centre

Dolly, DNA & Me: Cells & Inheritance

Look at your cells, learn about DNA, extract your own and take it home!

Learning Level: S1 to S2

Location: Easter Bush Science Outreach Centre, University of Edinburgh Easter Bush Campus, EH25 9RG

Minimum attendance: 16*

Maximum attendance: 24

Duration: 4.5 hours

Timings: 10am - 2.30pm

Cost: £5 per pupil

Availability: Our secondary programme will be released Autumn 2023, to remain updated about our workshops, events and exciting opportunities please  sign up to our mailing list and/or follow us on Twitter @EBSOClab. In the meantime, why not check out our classroom resources that are free to download!

* If your numbers are below 16, please let us know and we will do our best to twin you with another group.

Workshop Description

In this workshop you will get a chance to look at your own cells under the microscope, extract and bottle your own DNA and take it home! You will learn about what DNA is, see how it works and hear about how scientists use DNA in the lab from the scientists themselves.


I just want to say a big thank you for the workshop that you delivered to our pupils. They all thoroughly enjoyed it and the feedback that has been passed on to me has been extremely positive.

Biology TeacherSouth Lanarkshire

Learning objectives

  • To understand that living things are made of cells
  • To explore the structure of cells
  • To learn about the structure of DNA, how to extract and precipitate it
  • To explore the difference between inherited and learned traits
  • To follow simple patterns of inheritance
  • To appreciate the contribution that DNA technology has contributed to scientific discovery, and the impact this has made on society
  • To reveal the world of work in scientific research

Workshop activities

  • Using microscopes to look at pupil's own cheek cells
  • Isolating pupil's own DNA from their cheek cells
  • Carrying inheritance activities to understand the genetics behind their own characteristics
  • Carrying out an inheritance activity to understand the genetics behind our own characteristics
  • Discussion with scientists from The Roslin Institute

Curriculum links

Biological systems
Topical science 
Body systems and cells 
Topical science 

Using a microscope, I have developed my understanding of the structure and variety of cells and their functions.


I have extracted DNA and understand its function. I can express an informed view of the risks and benefits of DNA profiling. 


I have collaborated with others to find and present information on how scientists from Scotland and beyond have contributed to innovative research and development. 

SCN 3-20a 

Developing the Young Workforce

The following "I can" statements are supported through EBSOC’s workshops:
  • “I can discuss the relevance of skills to the wider world and make connections between skills and the world of work.”
  • “I can explain to others my ambitions/what I would like to do and look for ways to achieve them/that.”
  • “I believe I can maximise my potential in any type of work.”


Thank you for your interest in this workshop, this academic year we will not be offering this workshop as part of our learning programme. Why not check out classroom resources that are free to download!


Important Notes

*  Please contact us ebsoc@ed.ac.uk if your group falls below the minimum as we may be able to accommodate your request

    through our small groups waiting list. 


Downloadable Resources

Risk Assessment
Workshop Description


We could use proper equipment e.g.microscopes, 100% alcohol, our own cells and DNA.  Thank you.

Secondary Biology Pupil