Big idea: Heredity and life cycles

Each generation of organisms inherits characteristics from the one before, which arise from genetic information stored in the DNA of the genome and are affected by the environment. Organisms grow and change as they get older; they pass genetic information to their offspring when they reproduce, and the life cycle begins again.

Download teacher notes for this big idea

Resources for age 11-14

Research informed progression toolkits to help you develop the big ideas of science

The big idea is developed through a series of key concepts at age 11-14, which have been organised into teaching topics.

Topic 1: Inheritance and the genome

Topic 2: Changes within an organism’s lifetime

Topic 3: Reproduction

Is there a recommended teaching order?

The Best Evidence Science Teaching resources can be used with your existing scheme of work, if desired. 

However, we have used research evidence on learning pathways and effective sequencing of ideas to develop subject maps for biology, chemistry, earth science and physics. 

View the biology subject map