Give themselves marks out of five.
The clone looks like them, it sounds like them but as it is an exact copy it also feels like them. How will it feel when it has finished the five tasks it was set? Write an answer in one word.
Was it fair to treat the clone like that?
Explain that one reason that some people oppose clone research is that clones may be treated badly.
2) Main activity
Should scientists be allowed to experiment with cloning humans?
At the moment mainstream scientists are not cloning whole human beings, just their cells. They use the cells for research into cancer and AIDS, which is beneficial to humanity.
The problem is that groups like the Raelian cult want to clone a human being. One argument against cloning cells is that it is a 'slippery slope' that will lead to cloning of people.
Balance the arguments for and against
In this exercise the conclusion is less important than how it is arrived at, students see the arguments on both sides.
On a piece of paper draw six triangles, about the size and shape of a cheese triangle. These form the base of six see-saws. By drawing a plank across the base students can balance two arguments, or one can outweigh the other. Which way the balance falls is up to the students, they must justify in a sentence or verbally their decision. The pairs of arguments are taken from the lists below.
For cloning embryos
- Human cloning is inevitable. A ban won't stop it, just force it underground.
- Cloned cells could be used to develop a cure for cancer.
- Cloned cells could get rid of the need for animals in experiments.
- Cloning would help infertile couples have babies.
- Cloned organs could be used for transplants.
- Allowing the cloning of cells does not have to lead to cloning people.
Against cloning embryos
- Cloning could go wrong and produce deformed offspring.
- Most cloned animals die before they are born.
- Cloned people may be discriminated against.
- An army of clones could be produced to fight wars.
- Cloning makes us all less special (replaceable).
- Clones could be cleverer and stronger than us, and take over
Print this list as the Worksheet: