In the first part of this activity, students learn how to use the floating leaf disk method to measure the rate of net photosynthesis (i.e. the rate of photosynthesis minus the rate of cellular respiration). They use this method to show that net photosynthesis occurs in leaf disks in a solution of sodium bicarbonate, but not in water. Questions guide students in reviewing the relevant biology and analyzing and interpreting their results. In the second part of this activity, student groups develop hypotheses about factors that influence the rate of net photosynthesis, and then each student group designs and carries out an investigation to test the effects of one of these factors. (NGSS)
Animals that consume plants also make use of this energy, as do those that consume those that consume plants, and so on to the top of the food chain.
As important a job as making all of the world's food is, there's another vital function that photosynthesis performs: It generates the oxygen that oxygen-breathing animals need to survive.
My advice for teaching this concept is to use hands-on materials ..
The expression "hands-on, minds-on" summarizes the philosophy we have incorporated in these activities - namely, that students will learn best if they are actively engaged and if their activities are closely linked to understanding important biological concepts.
Lesson Plans: Photosynthesis (Middle, Science)
In this activity, students extract DNA from Archaea or from their cheek cells. Students learn key concepts about DNA function during the intervals required for the extraction procedure. Student understanding of DNA structure, function and replication is further developed by additional analysis and discussion questions and hands-on modeling of DNA replication. (NGSS)
Imaginative Hands-on Plant Activities for Your Classroom
In this minds-on, hands-on activity, students develop their understanding of natural selection by analyzing specific examples and carrying out a simulation. The questions in the introductory section introduce students to the basic process of natural selection, including key concepts and vocabulary. The second section includes a simulation activity, data analysis, and interpretation questions to deepen students' understanding of natural selection. In the third section, students interpret evidence concerning natural selection in the peppered moth and answer questions designed to consolidate a scientifically accurate understanding of how the process of natural selection can result in evolutionary change. (NGSS)
Discover a photosynthesis activity that makes for ..
In this minds-on, hands-on activity, students learn the genetics of the ABO blood type system. Students use simple chemicals to simulate blood type tests and then carry out genetic analyses to determine whether hospital staff accidentally switched two babies born on the same day. This activity reinforces student understanding of the fundamental concepts that genes code for proteins which influence an organism's characteristics and Punnett squares summarize how meiosis and fertilization result in inheritance. Students also learn about codominance and multiple alleles of a single gene. The first version of the Student Handout includes an introduction to the immunobiology of the ABO blood type system. The second version includes an analysis of the genetics of skin color in which students learn how fraternal twins could have very different skin colors, the concept of incomplete dominance, and how a single phenotypic characteristic can be influenced by multiple genes and the environment. (NGSS)