Grade Level(s): 6, 7, 8
Computer for Presenter, LCD Projector
1 Hour(s) 30 Minute(s)
Resource supports reading in content area:Yes
Freely Available: Yes
Keywords: respiration, model, cell, energy, glucose
Lesson Plan Template: Learning Cycle (5E Model)
Learning Objectives: What will students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
- Students will be able to model and describe the breakdown of carbon-rich molecules during cellular respiration to provide energy for cells. This lesson addresses a conceptual understanding of cellular respiration.
- Students will be able to explain cellular respiration as breaking chemical bonds of "food" molecules (sugar during this lesson) and transformation of energy to energy-rich molecules.
- Students will know that oxygen is required for cellular respiration and carbon dioxide and water are released during cellular respiration.
- Students will be able to draw a simple diagram of cellular respiration indicating:
- breaking chemical bonds (this is key learning)
- requirement of oxygen
- release of carbon dioxide
- energy output from the process (this is key learning)
Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?
This lesson addresses an abstract and complex topic for middle school students, so prior knowledge is important to consider. Students should know that:
- cells are composed of sub-structures (e.g., mitochondria)
- energy can be stored in chemical bonds
- molecules are composed of atoms joined by bonds
- Preferable: experience creating drawings as models of biological processes
- Preferable: scientific record keeping experience
Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
- How do cells get energy to function?
Engage: What object, event, or questions will the teacher use to trigger the students' curiosity and engage them in the concepts?
During the Engage phase, students will focus on food and use of food for energy in organisms (10 minutes)
- Teacher: Today you will be simulating how matter and chemical energy stored in food are transformed into matter and energy for cells to function. (post learning goal for students)
- Give the students something sweet to eat, like a piece of candy.
- Show students images or videos of animals and plants acquiring energy (e.g., animals eating, plants in the sun). See this slide show for an example.
- Show or tell students the contents of what they ate (e.g., 1 gram carbohydrate)
- Teacher: Today, we will see how chemical energy in the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that organisms acquire are transformed into energy that cells can use to survive, respond to stimuli, and grow.
- Show images or videos of plants and animals responding to stimuli and growing. (See the latter two slides of the slide show for an example.) Explain that cells convert chemical energy from foods into high-energy molecules that the cell can use to survive, respond to stimuli, and grow.
- Teacher: Much of the matter and energy used by organisms comes in the form of sugars. Glucose is a sugar that has 6 carbons bonded together. Glucose is the major sugar used by organisms to obtain matter and energy. In the following simulation, you and a partner will be masters of a cell and will simulate cellular respiration.
Explore: What will the students do to explore the concepts and skills being developed through the lesson?
During the Explore phase, students will simulate cellular respiration with manipulatives (25 minutes)
The important aspects of the simulation are that students understand that energy is stored in chemical bonds, energy is released when bonds are broken, and energy is transferred to create other chemical bonds that can be used by the cell. The details of the names of molecules and the names of the processes are not as important as the overall concepts of matter, chemical energy and energy transformation.
- Display the Respiration Simulation Storyline. Explain to students that they will be following this simulation storyline to simulate the process by which cells convert food energy into high-energy molecules that the cell can later use for growth and reproduction.
- Students are expected to follow the storyline and simulate the story using the provided molecules and energy chips. Explain that one side of the energy chips represent "low-energy molecules" and the other side of the chips represent "high-energy molecules."
- Note to teacher: for the purpose of simplifying this introductory lesson, distinction between ADP and NAD+ as the low energy molecules and ATP and NADH as the high-energy molecules is not made for students.
- Display the attached Cellular Respiration Record. Explain the that students are expected to draw the molecules in the first column, record the changes in energy in the second column, and read and answer any questions in the third column.
- Provide a time limit and expectations or roles (e.g., matter tracker and energy tracker, or recorder and task master) for collaborative work.
- 4. Provide students with the following:
- One 6-atom molecule per pair that can be broken between the atoms. This is simulating glucose. You could use toothpicks and clay balls. You could use paper model (see Uploaded Files for Molecule example.)
- 48 2-sided color chips per pair (with one color on one side and another color on the other side). These represent low-energy (ADP) and high-energy (ATP) molecules.
- Respiration Record sheet (1 per student)
- Respiration Storyline (1 per pair is sufficient)
Explain: What will the students and teacher do so students have opportunities to clarify their ideas, reach a conclusion or generalization, and communicate what they know to others?
During the Explain phase, students will create a drawing to model the process of cellular respiration that they simulated during the exploration (15 minutes)
- Teacher: Based on your simulation and Respiration Record, you will create a drawing to model the process of cellular respiration that you just simulated.
- Provide students with the Respiration Model Drawing Rubric and review the rubric with students to ensure that the expectations are clear.
- Provide students with a time limit and a large paper or white board on which they will create their work. If large whiteboards are used, be sure to take pictures for record and to provide feedback to students and use as an assessment.
Elaborate: What will the students do to apply their conceptual understanding and skills to solve a problem, make a decision, perform a task, or make sense of new knowledge?
During the Elaborate phase, students will present their drawings to another group while considering the following focus question: What is one important detail that is included on the other group's drawing that would improve our drawing? (10 minutes)
- The presentations could be structured where Groups 1 and 2 present to each other while Groups 3 and 4 present to each other.
- As groups are presenting, the teacher can be assessing formatively (asking probing questions, taking notes regarding misconceptions to address, affirming great thought processes, etc).
- Teachers may use the drawing/model with accompanying rubric as summative assessment.
- Teachers may use the Exit Ticket as asummative assessment. Exit Ticket responses:
- How does food get converted to energy during cellular respiration? [Students should indicate that food molecules are broken down or chemical bonds are broken thus releasing energy that is transferred to other molecules or converted to high-energy molecules]
- What are the necessary resources for cellular respiration to occur? [sugars or food, water, and oxygen]
- In cellular respiration, where does the carbon dioxide come from? [breakdown of sugars or carbon bonds]
- Teachers can utilize the Respiration Record of the simulation to assess students' understanding of the steps of cellular respiration. In particular, teachers should be looking for: accurate records of the steps, conservation of matter, transformation of energy.
- Teachers can utilize students' Respiration Model of the process to assess whether students understand cellular respiration as the breakdown of molecules and transformation of energy (see Rubric for drawing).
Feedback to Students
- Teachers can provide feedback to students as they are creating the Respiration Record during the Simulation. Teachers can provide feedback related to the accuracy, clarity, and detail of what students are recording.
- Students' drawings/models provide a great opportunity for feedback to students with respect to their understanding and reflecting the rubric.
- Feedback to Students:
Teachers can provide feedback to students as they are creating the Respiration Record during the Simulation. Teachers can provide feedback related to the accuracy, clarity, and detail of what students are recording.
Students' drawings/models provide a great opportunity for feedback to students with respect to their understanding and reflecting the rubric.
- Summative Assessment:
Teachers may utilize the drawing/model with accompanying rubric as summative assessment.
Teachers may utilize the Exit Ticket as a summative assessment.
Exit Ticket responses:
How does food get converted to energy during cellular respiration? [Students should indicate that food molecules are broken down or chemical bonds are broken thus releasing energy that is transferred to other molecules or converted to high-energy molecules]
What are the necessary resources for cellular respiration to occur? [sugars or food, water, and oxygen]
In cellular respiration, where does the carbon dioxide come from? [breakdown of sugars or carbon bonds]
Accommodations & Recommendations
This lesson addresses an abstract and complex topic for middle school students, so prior knowledge of chemical bonding, macromolecules, ATP/ADP, glycolysis, TCA cycle, or the electron transport chain is highly recommended.
Source and Access Information
Name of Author/Source: Danielle Sherdan
District/Organization of Contributor(s): Other
Is this Resource freely Available? Yes
Access Privileges: Public
* Please note that examples of resources are not intended as complete curriculum.