Photosynthesis and Biomass Growth (7 Activities)

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Grades

9-12

Subject

Bioenergy

Summary

Introduce your students to the power of plants! Photosynthesis is arguably the most important form of energy transformation and is a fundamental concept for students of all ages. Projects listed in this section should be used as an exciting starting point for both classroom and science fair projects. Most of the materials are easily obtainable at your local home or garden center. We encourage you to modify the experiments to fit your curriculum needs. The activities are:

  • How do modern farming techniques affect the growth of biomass?
  • Is natural sunlight, imitation sunlight, fluorescent light, or incandescent light best for plants?
  • How do varying CO2 levels affect the growth rate in plants?
  • What are the true colors of leaves?
  • How do aquatic plants survive under water? Do they still need light to make oxygen?
  • What happens when plants are crowded?
  • Can a cascade of wetlands be a pollution solution?
Curriculum

General Science, Environmental Science, Biology, Social Studies

Plan Time

Varies by activity

Materials

Varies by activity

Standards

Science Content Standards: 5-8
CONTENT STANDARD A: Science As Inquiry

  • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
  • Understandings about scientific inquiry

CONTENT STANDARD C: Life Science

  • Regulation and behavior
  • Populations and ecosystems
  • Diversity and adaptations of organisms

CONTENT STANDARD E: Science and Technology

  • Abilities of technological design
  • Understandings about science and technology

CONTENT STANDARD F: Science in Personal and Social Perspectives

  • Personal health
  • Populations, resources, and environments
  • Natural hazards
  • Risks and benefits
  • Science and technology in society

Science Content Standards: 9-12
CONTENT STANDARD A: Science As Inquiry

  • Abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry
  • Understandings about scientific inquiry

CONTENT STANDARD C: Life Science

  • Interdependence of organisms
  • Matter, energy, and organization in living systems

CONTENT STANDARD E: Science and Technology

  • Abilities of technological design
  • Understandings about science and technology

CONTENT STANDARD F: Science in Personal and Social Perspectives

  • Personal and community health
  • Population growth
  • Natural resources
  • Environmental quality
  • Natural and human-induced hazards
  • Science and technology in local, national, and global challenges
Owner

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Lesson Plans/Activity