Teaching (and learning) Photosynthesis Doesn't Need to be Hard!
When teaching photosynthesis keep it simple until basic concepts are mastered.
What do you need to know about photosynthesis?
Before getting to the details of photosynthesis it is a good idea to review the basic structure of a plant cell:
A simplifies version of photosynthesis is pictured below:
The equation states:
Six molecules of water plus six molecules of carbon dioxide produce one molecule of sugar plus six molecules of oxygenWhat this diagram says: The light reactions (left) use sunlight to make ATP and NADPH. The Dark Reactions or Calvin Cycle take the ATP and NADPH created by the light reactions PLUS CO2, and make sugar. That sugar is then used for cellular energy. The difference between ATP in a plant cell and ATP in an animal cell is that in a plant cell ATP is used to drive the Calvin Cycle and not for direct energy.
The reactants are:
The Products are:
Need more info? Simple Schooling will be coming out with a high school biology workbook this summer. In the meantime - Take a look at these awesome video tutorials:
Links to Student Help pages: