DNAZone is an outreach program for 4th–12th grade students organized by the members of the Center for Nucleic Acids Science and Technology (CNAST). The program began its activities in 2009 and is intended to improve student engagement, attitudes and beliefs towards science. The students that participate in DNAZone learn to appreciate the value of collaboration and interdisciplinarity in research.
The activities of the DNAZone program are designed toteach core concepts of chemistry, physics, biology and engineering. Students learn about the deep and meaningful connections between math, science and engineering. They also learn how chemistry serves as a foundation for many disciplines and areas of science such as biology, materials science, biotechnology and nanotechnology.
Initially, the program was advocated through established outreach programs at Carnegie Mellon University as well as through demonstrations at Public Schools in Pittsburgh. Then, we created this website as a means to distribute more broadly the information necessary to implement demonstrations and experiments in the classroom. We identify also curriculum ties. We invite teachers who visit the website to contribute by providing feedback and/or new materials that we will gladly use to further develop the website. Appropriate credit will be given for all contributions.
CNAST at Carnegie Mellon University was founded in 2007 and established Carnegie Mellon as a world leader in interdisciplinary research concerning nucleic acids. A group of biologists, physicists, chemists and engineers all perform cutting edge research in the science of nucleic acids as well as their interactions with other molecules and surfaces. Furthermore, the faculty and students of CNAST work to develop applications for nucleic acids in biology, medicine and engineering. For more information go to the
Please Contact Professor Catalina Achim (CMU Chemistry) for further questions regarding the program