Biology

Structure and Function of Cells

Lesson Plan

State Standards:

Structure and Function of Cells
Strand #2: Recognize that all organisms are composed of cells, and that many organisms are single-celled (unicellular) e.g. bacteria, yeast. In these single- celled organisms, one cell must carry out all of the basic functions of life.

Essential Question:

What does it mean to be alive?

Lesson Question:

What do plants and animals have in common?

Introduction:

Introduce students to the idea that all living organisms are composed of one or more cells. And, to be considered living or having lived the organism must exhibit the following: growth, respiration, reproduction, feeding, excretion, sensitivity, movement.

 

Task:

Post a KWL chart and ask students what they know about animal and plant cells. Then what do they want to know.

Present different objects and ask students to determine if they are live or not. Have students
explain their reasoning.

Introduce students students to "alive" criteria - what is means to be alive or have been alive. i.e. growth, respiration, reproduction, feeding, excretion, sensitivity, movement.

Break students into groups of 4 based on varied levels of understanding and learning styles. Assign each group an animal or plant. (simple to complex )

Each group will find a picture of the assigned plant/animal and a picture of a cell associated with that plant/animal.

Each group will present their findings to the class and will discuss/present in terms of criteria for being live and the complexity of the organism.
(Can post presentations/pictures on classroom web page using web 2.0 tools)

Facilitate discussion in comparing and contrasting different organisms in terms of complexity and similarities. Refer to what all organisms have in common, what it means to be alive, and basic commonalities in cell functions in plants and animals. Make connection between what the "whole animal/plant" does and the "individual cell" of the animal/plant does.

Post what the students have learned on the KWL chart.
ACTIVITY TYPES:
Conceptual Knowledge Building Activity Types:Students will view video on cells. They could view video on their own computers/hand-held devices or the video could be shown using a smart board to all students.
Procedural Knowledge Building Activity Types:Students using the activities/labs mentioned above will observe and gather data which can be recorded on a spreadsheet, word processing software and or documented and shared with a flip video.
Knowledge of Expression Activity Type: Using presentation software or a video creation students can demonstrate findings and discuss/debate understanding and concepts within the classroom or on a class website.

 

Lesson Experiences:

It is difficult for students to conceptualize the idea that all living organisms are composed of one or more cells. Also, that plant and animal cells have common functions/structures and that one cell must carry out all the basic functions of life.

Conclusion:

As an introduction to cells- and the understanding that all living organisms are composed of one or more cells this lesson works well. It can be easily differentiated to all levels on ability.

Assessments:

Informal: Science journals, classroom discussions, KWL chart
Formal: Tests, quizzes, presentations

Resources:

Video to support understanding that all organisms are composed of cells.

Technology - computer access, overheard projector

Textbook, handouts

Presentation Rubric