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New Friends

The Story Supplement

This book has been designed for younger children as a fun and creative story intended to spark their imagination. On a subliminal level this story also introduces young minds to the shapes and processes of biology.  This particular adventure offers an illustrated representation of an important aspect of the biological process known mitosis. This happens in the cells of the human body when we grow; or when cells get old or damaged and need replacing.

 

Alina, Tristan, Gina and Crispin are the Dinky Amigos and represent four chemicals known as bases. They join with each other in pairs and appear many times to create DNA – the genetic information that makes us who we are. As we grow, we need more DNA, which must be copied exactly. This copying process is called replication and is part of a larger copying process known as mitosis.

DNA exists as two rows of Dinky Amigos lined up in the same order. One row  faces forward whilst the second faces the opposite way.  Both rows are twisted together like a spiral. This is known as a double helix where Alina always stands opposite Tristan, and Gina always stands opposite Crispin.

During mitosis, the double helix must be prised apart so that each row (or strand) can be copied separately. This copying involves new Dinky Amigos who stand opposite those from the original strand.

For their own safety, the Dinky Amigos need to stand in a double row.  They also like to play and dance. But, when they go on the orange slideabout, the double row gets separated.  The Dinky Amigos facing forward go one way (to the Lead dance) whilst those facing the opposite way are sent to the Lag-O-Frag dance.

Only through dancing can the Dinky Amigos meet new friends to help them create two new double rows and be safe once more.

Ana

Not all the Dinky Amigos have been to a dance before, so they need help. Most of this help comes from Ana. She shows them to the right dance hall and stays to help with the Lag-o-Frag dance. She even makes sure there are balloons so the Dinky Amigos have a good time!