Fantastic DNA in a Box!

Fantastic DNA in a box is a classroom kit, complete with both materials and resources, that allows pupils/students in your class to extract DNA from a banana individually. You can either run this activity yourself in your classroom, guided by our downloadable resources, or you also have the option of inviting 1-2 Cell EXPLORERS scientists to remotely facilitate the experimental steps through a secure Zoom connection on the day of the experiment.

With the help of the box's pre-packaged materials, video instructions & optional online support, teachers can set up this session with ease and run a discussion on science, scientists, Cells & DNA as well as facilitate a hands-on DNA extraction in their classroom.


What is this about?


Watch the short video below to find out more about this new activity! 

What's in the box?

The box contains all of the necessary items to run the Fantastic DNA session in the classroom.


It includes real laboratory small equipment, including tubes, foldable cardboard tube racks, dropper pipettes and plastic loops, and reagents for 36 participants  to practice the experiment individually. Better yet- the cardboard racks, dropper pipettes, plastic loops and plastic tubes can all be re-used - opening opportunities for future science activities! 

The box is packed in a manner that allows the session to be set up with ease and in a timely fashion, including pre-packed children's bags containing all of the consumables needed for one person.


The box also contains a teacher pack with extra information and Achievement Certificates for the students. Support materials to run the session is also provided to teachers in the Teacher Zone section.

Children also have the possibility to practice the experiment with some of our Cell EXPLORERS Explainers, through a secure online Zoom session.

The ready-packed box will be available for collection from the NUI Galway campus after registering and requesting a pick up time in the 'request a box' section.


The Fantastic DNA classroom activity

This session provides children and young people with the opportunity to engage in hands-on modern biology. Children will gain a basic understanding of the role and structure of cells and DNA, the building blocks of life, and practice the DNA extraction experiment individually.

Teachers can follow a lesson plan to use Fantastic DNA in a box with your class.

Following the suggested steps will allow the class to think critically about science and scientists, to reflect on the connection between science and everyday life and attain the core concepts and learning outcomes needed to engage meaningfully in the practical experiment, which is the last step of the activity.

The 'Fantastic DNA in a box' kit contains all of the resources you need to guide your class through the experiment successfully, including video instructions on how to set up your classroom for the session. You will have the opportunity to run the experiment either by yourself, or with the support of Cell EXPLORERS Explainers, through a secure zoom connection at an agreed-upon time.

Suitable for: Primary school pupils (5th to 6th class) or post-primary school students (1st year to 3rd year).


How to get ready

Access the PDF of our step by step guide to Fantastic DNA in a box here.


Request a Box

Kits will be available to teachers from the 15th of October, after completion of classroom pilot of all resources.

To request the experimental kit, please email using "Fantastic DNA in a box kit request" in the subject of your email. Include your school roll number and your mobile number to facilitate the communication.

Because ‘Fantastic DNA in a Box’ contains ethanol, which is flammable, we cannot post it to you. You will need to collect the kit from our laboratory at NUI Galway. Additional collection points might be arranged within our national network at the end of October, for use of the kit during national Science week.

We will email you back to arrange collection – this can be done any day Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm. Either you or a representative of your school will need to collect it, this will need to be determined in advance.

You will need to consult the Health & Safety notice and Risk Assessment for the activities before collecting the box. When you collect the box you will be requested to confirm via signature that you have read and understood the Health & Safety measures that relate to the session.


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School of Natural Sciences, Arts and Science Building, National University of Ireland, Galway

Cell EXPLORERS is funded by Science Foundation Ireland under the SFI Discover programme, NUI Galway and the Galway University Foundation.