Through the process of photosynthesis, plants harness the Sun's energy and in so doing make many forms of life—including human life—possible. What path does this energy follow, and how is it transferred from one type of organism to another? In this feature from NOVA: Earth, learn why 400 pounds of corn cannot be converted into a 400-pound cow.
The classroom resource provides a video that will describe how living and non-living things a part of an interactive system. There is also a short test that can be used to assess students' understanding.
The cells of plants include several parts, such as the cell body, cytoplasm, mitochondria, nucleus, vacuole, cell membrane, cell wall, and chloroplasts. Only plant cells have plant walls and chloroplasts.
The classroom resource provides a slide show that will describe the structures of a plant cell. In addition, there is a sing-along video that students can perform karaoke-style that will help them remember the different structures. After utilizing these two resources, the students can complete the short test to assess their understanding.
The teacher will present an informational text from the website, ReadWorks. Students will interact with this non-fiction text by annotating the text digitally. The students will answer the questions associated with the article as an assessment. This learning activity will help explain the role of photosynthesis in cycling matter and energy into and out of organisms. The nonfiction text presents an experiment that will help explain the process of photosynthesis in an engaging, high-interest manner.
This is the fourth lesson in a series that addresses the concept of cities as urban ecosystems that include both nature and humans in a largely human-built environment. This lesson will show students that most of the materials and energy used by a city come from outside the city boundaries. Students will need to have at least a general working understanding of the concepts of flow (as in energy flow) and cycles (as in nutrient cycles) in order to get the most out of this lesson.