Transformations in Matter and Energy Carbon TIME is an NSF-funded partnership led by Michigan State University
Activity 5.3: Explaining How Potato Plants Grow: Biosynthesis (40 min)
Target Student Performance
Students explain how matter moves and changes and how energy changes during biosynthesis in a potato plant’s cells.
Note: This lesson should be taught, regardless of if you taught only Activity 5.1 or both Activities 5.1 and 5.2. However, the language you use and the responses you should expect from your students will be different. Students who did 5.2, molecular modeling, should use the terms “polymers” and “monomers” in their explanations of digestion and biosynthesis, including the names of specific polymers (e.g., proteins, fats and carbohydrates) and monomers (e.g., amino acids, fatty acids, glycerol). Students who only did 5.1 should use the terms "large organic molecules" and "small organic molecules" rather than polymers and monomers and use the names of specific large organic molecules (e.g., proteins, fats and carbohydrates) only. Throughout the PPT, you will find both sets of vocabulary.
Resources You Provide
- (from previous lesson) 3.5 Evidence-Based Arguments Tool for Plants
- 5.3 Explaining How Plants Grow: Biosynthesis PPT
- 5.3 Explanations Tool for Potato Biosynthesis (1 per student)
- 5.3 Grading the Explanations Tools for Potato Biosynthesis
- 5.3 How do Plants Use Food to Grow Reading (1 per student)
- (Optional) Big Idea Probe: Houseplant for a Busy Family (1 per student)
- (Optional) Assessing the Big Idea Probe: Houseplant for a Busy Family
- Plants Matter Tracing Tool (1 per student)
- Assessing the Plants Matter Tracing Tool
- Learning Tracking Tool for Plants (1 per student)
- Assessing the Learning Tracking Tool for Plants
- Example Plant Explanations Handout (1 per student or per group)
- Three Questions 11x17 Poster (1 per class)
- Three Questions Handout (1 per student)
- Digestion and Biosynthesis of Carbohydrates 11 x 17 Poster (1 per class)
- Digestion and Biosynthesis of Fat 11 x 17 Poster (1 per class)
- Digestion and Biosynthesis of Protein 11 x 17 Poster (1 per class)
- (Optional) Metabolic Pathways Poster
- Questions, Connections, Questions Student Reading Strategy
Print one copy of the 5.3 Explanations Tool for Potato Biosynthesis for each student. If you are using it, print one copy of the Big Idea Probe: Houseplant for a Busy Family for each student. Prepare a computer and a projector to display the PPT. Print and hang the Digestion and Biosynthesis 11 x 17 Posters. In this activity, your students will need to use the Three Questions Explanation Checklist on the back of the Three Questions Handout. Be sure to have this available to students, and see the notes in the Modifications at the end of the Activity for ideas about how to use it.
Use 5.3 Grading the Explanations Tools for Potato Biosynthesis to grade student responses. At this point, students can be held accountable for correct answers. If students are still struggling with these concepts, you may want to revisit parts of the lesson they are finding difficult. Use Assessing the Plants Matter Tracing Tool to grade the tool.