Week #1: The Journey of My Life: Hi! Allow me to introduce myself. My name is ___________hmm, well I guess my name hasn’t been decided yet. Today I was conceived in my mother’s womb, and my mom and dad don’t even know about me yet. I know they will be so excited. It will take about 40 weeks for me to become transformed into the bouncing baby boy or girl they have been waiting for. If you could see into my chromosomes, you could tell if I am a boy or a girl. I am very tiny because my body has only 1 cell. As tiny as I am, my single celled body contains DNA in my 46 human chromosomes and 20,000 to 25,000 protein coding genes.
While my body has just one cell, scientists call me a “zygote”. About 2 or 3 days after conception, my one celled body will divide into 2 cells. Then one of my 2 cells will divide again, so I will have 3 cells, then divide again, so the number of cells will increase from 4, to 8, to 16 and so on. At the 16 cell stage scientists will call me a “morula”. As a “morula” I am taking my first trip traveling through one of my mother’s fallopian tubes, heading for the uterus, or womb, where there will be food and shelter. The womb will be my home for the next 9
months, where I can safely grow and develop. About 4-5 days after conception scientists will call me a blastocyst”