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In this lesson, students will learn about the phases of mitosis by predicting the order of the phases and by drawing diagrams of the chromosomes during the various phases. Students will:

  • make connections between cell division and the growth of organisms.
  • predict the order of the phases of mitosis given diagrams in a scrambled order.
  • diagram the various stages of mitosis showing the movement of chromosomes in the cell.
  • create mnemonic devices to help students remember the order of the phases.

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  • Mitosis: The process by which a cell separates the two copies of its DNA into two daughter cells.
  • Interphase: The phase of the cell cycle in which chromosomes are not visible (unwound as chromatin, not condensed as chromosomes).
  • Prophase: The phase of the cell cycle in which chromosomes are visible.
  • Metaphase: The phase of the cell cycle in which chromosomes are lined up in the cell.
  • Anaphase: The phase of the cell cycle in which the chromosomes are separated/ separating.
  • Telophase: The phase of the cell cycle in which the nucleus reforms after anaphase.
  • Cytokinesis: The phase of the cell cycle in which the cell membrane is fully separated between daughter cells.
  • Chromosome: A condensed structure in the cells of all organisms that is made up of DNA.
  • Haploid: A cell that contains one set of chromosomes (and only a single set of genes).
  • Diploid: A cell that contains both sets of homologous chromosomes.
  • Somatic: A body cell.
  • Sex cell: An egg or sperm; sex cells are haploid.
  • Zygote: A fertilized egg.


120–135 minutes/2–3 class periods

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  • Animal Cell Mitosis (animation)


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