SEP Teaching Resources


We support engaging, challenging and relevant classroom learning experiences for all students by providing access to high-quality instructional materials developed by teachers and scientists, as well as the resources needed to explore life science concepts in a classroom laboratory setting. The SEP curriculum includes complete lesson plans, as well as biotechnology equipment and supplies. Participating teachers have access to our Kit Loan Program. 

Featured Curriculum

Featured in The Science Teacher (2019)

Protocol Design: DNA Extraction

DNA extraction from strawberries is a well-known procedure that allows students to visualize DNA and to recognize that living things contain DNA. Many similar protocols exist, and most involve simple materials that can be readily obtained. In our lesson, we provide a modification to the traditional DNA extraction protocol that promotes student agency in experimental design and also emphasizes important social dimensions of argumentation.

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Funded by The Dean Witter Foundation

Wildlife CSI: Elephant Ivory Cache

Explore how to integrate conservation, ethics, and biotechnology into a biology classroom by using current research on African elephant conservation and a collaborative lab experience. This problem-based curriculum integrates Internet research, DNA analysis, and bioethical issues as students track down the origins of a piece of confiscated ivory. Students discover how modern biomolecular research tools can help conserve a species, in this case the African elephant.

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Explore more SEP curriculum & resources

Teacher Resources

Kit Loan Program

Program participants have access to the Kit Loan Program developed and maintained by SEP.  Fred Hutch and other funders provide these kits to teachers, free of cost.

Last year, over 15,000 students used SEP kits and supplies in their science classes. Because many students use several different kits during the course of a school year there are approximately 35,000 student-uses annually.

These kits offer SEP teachers the opportunity to share hands-on laboratory experiences with students in their classrooms, giving students a unique chance to engage in an authentic, problem-solving approach to science using the same tools and concepts utilized by researchers.

Kits contain the equipment and supplies necessary for experiments in DNA gel electrophoresis, bacterial transformation, fruit fly genetics, column chromatography, ELISA, DNA extraction and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). Many different model-based kits are also available.

SEP staff are available during school hours to provide advice and technical support for kit use. In addition, scientists from Fred Hutch and the community donate scientific equipment and consumables to SEP, which are then made available to teachers.

Kit Pick-Up and Drop Off Information


When picking up or dropping off kits, we recommend you park in the visitor lot by the Thomas Building entrance.

During regular weekday hours, go to the SEP Lab, room A1-023

  • Enter the Thomas building and check in at the front desk. Tell the person you are an SEP teacher and need an SEP badge.
  • Go down the hall, past the cafe. Scan your badge to enter the glass security doors and follow the hallway to the right of the elevators.
  • You’ll see a large SEP poster hanging on the wall next to our door. If the door is closed, your badge will open it. Our pick-up/drop-off area is right as you walk in.

If you’re picking up kits, don’t forget to collect any necessary fridge or freezer supplies.

After-hours and on weekends, go to the Teaching Lab, room B1-076

  • At the Thomas Building entrance, page security using the intercom to the right of the door.
  • Give security your name and tell them you are an SEP teacher, there to pick up supplies.
  • When the doors unlock, go down the hall, past the cafe.
  • Room B1-076 will be on the right, before the glass security doors (look for the SEP sign).

Questions?  Download the Kit Drop-Off and Pick-Up FAQs.