Aerobic Respiration Gives a Cell More “Spending Power”

Written by Jennifer Wiatrowski, Pasco-Hernando Community College

Relating the value of aerobic respiration to the real world. The students in introductory biology have very little interest in cellular respiration. But, I want them to understand that there is greater value (in terms of ATP yield) between aerobic and anaerobic respiration (like with exercise). So, I relate the processes to “dollars in your pocket” and “spending power at a fancy restaurant.” Anaerobic processes give your 2 ATP or 2 dollars in your pocket. Could this buy you anything at a fancy restaurant? No! This is not a lot of spending power. If you complete aerobic respiration, you have approximately 38 ATP or dollars in your pocket. Could this buy you something at a fancy restaurant? Yes! Now, you have spending power.

Energy Conversion and iPods

Jennifer Wiatrowski, Pasco-Hernando Community College

Relating the function of mitochondria and energy conversion to the real world. I ask students if they could charge their iPods by plugging it into a lump of coal or a waterfall (they generally laugh and say “no”). I then ask them if there is energy in a lump of coal or a waterfall (they  say “yes”). So, I reason that in order to utilize the energy in the coal or the falling water, it must be converted to another form. For charging their iPod, it must be changed into electricity and this is accomplished by a power plant. Now, I ask them what is the main energy source for cells? (They usually know this is sugar from earlier in the semester). I then explain that sugar is like a lump of coal to a cell. Full of energy, but inaccessible in that form. So, the job of the mitochondria is to convert the energy in sugar into a form the cell can use, ATP.Roblox HackBigo Live Beans HackYUGIOH DUEL LINKS HACKPokemon Duel HackRoblox HackPixel Gun 3d HackGrowtopia HackClash Royale Hackmy cafe recipes stories hackMobile Legends HackMobile Strike Hack

Demonstration of Electron Transport and ATP Production in Aerobic Respiration Using Students and Balloons

Written by Jennifer A. Metzler, Ball State University

Learning Outcomes:

– To allow students to visualize the events allowing ATP production from electrons carried by NADH and FADH2

– To demonstrate what the role of oxygen as the terminal electron acceptor really means

Activity Description: Students act out the electron transport chain and role of ATP synthase. Electrons and H+ are represented by different colored labeled balloons and each student representing a protein is labeled with a large piece of paper. This activity can work with any size class and is generally used as a review after the topic has been explained in class.

Time Needed: Approximately 15 minutes

Materials Needed:

– Eight student volunteers representing: Complex I, II, III, IV, oxygen, NADH, FADH2, and ATP synthase

– Three balloons representing H+, one balloon representing an electron, and a balloon to represent ATP

– Labels for all the “proteins” and molecules involved

Activity Instructions:

  1. Ask eight students to volunteer and give them a label randomly.
  2. Then ask the rest of the class to arrange the Complexes, oxygen, and ATP synthase in the appropriate positions.
  3. Ask the class how the balloons representing electrons, H+, and ATP should be distributed.
  4. First demonstrate ATP production from the electrons of NADH.
  5. Have students in the class indicate which complex (I, II, III or IV) that the NADH should pass its electron balloon to. Then have them explain how the electron should be passed, ultimately ending up at oxygen.
  6. Then have the class indicate which complexes should pump an H+ and have them move their balloon across “the membrane.”
  7. Finally, have the class indicate where the pumped protons should go to produce a molecule of ATP. Be sure to have your ATP synthase student spin to indicate the molecular machine that ATP synthase is.
  8. Then repeat the same procedure for the electrons of FADH2.
  9. Applaud for all of the hardworking volunteers.

Cell Respiration: Pair and Share

Written by Kelly A. Hogan, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Learning Outcomes:

– To practice explaining the individual parts of cellular respiration

– To appreciate that teaching is an important study tool

Activity Description: Students are given worksheets that have unlabeled figures of cellular respiration in three parts. Students label the images and take notes as part of lecture or on their own. They then pair off with a neighbor and teach each part.

Time Needed: Approximately 50 minutes

Materials Needed: Worksheet with unlabeled figures from your textbook

Activity Instructions: I have had much success using the unlabeled figures as the guideline to lecture. For example, we spend 10 minutes filling out the glycolysis portion of the outline. Students then break into pair-share partners. (One student explains the figure to their partner. The partner can make corrections if necessary. Then the partner explains it back to the original student.) We repeat with the citric acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation. The room is noisy, but the students appreciate the time to explain back a challenging topic to a partner. Before moving on, ask for questions from the students. After time to chew and digest the material this way, there are always questions!

After completing this activity, be sure to summarize all three sections and ask a few questions. Students are amazed after this that they really understand the material. Also stress the importance of studying this way. Students often have an “aha” moment about studying after this activity.

Potential questions: (You can easily make these into clicker questions or add them to their worksheets.)

  1. Which stage of cellular respiration makes the most reduced coenzymes? (Citric acid)
  2. Which stage makes the most ATP? (Oxidative phosphorylation)
  3. How does breathing in oxygen and breathing out carbon dioxide relate to this process? Where are those molecules made or needed? (Oxygen for accepting electrons and carbon dioxide as a product of acetyl co-A formation and the citric acid cycle.)
  4. What does it mean that NAD+ is reduced? (It gains two electrons and becomes NADH.)
  5. Water is a product of cellular respiration. Explain how it is made. (Electrons from NADH and FADH2 ultimately reduce oxygen, which joins with hydrogen ions to form water.)

Photosynthesis and Respiration: Are They Similar?

Written by Kelly A. Hogan, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Learning Outcomes:

– To compare and contrast two challenging topics: photosynthesis and cell respiration

– To appreciate that comparing and contrasting topics is an important study tool

– To promote discussion and questions from students about where they are confused

Activity Description: After students have already had lectures on cell respiration and photosynthesis, they are asked to compare and contrast these topics. This could be a very open-ended activity or can be done with a quick worksheet.

Time Needed: Activity should take about 15 minutes but could go on longer with much discussion and review

Materials Needed: Copies of the worksheet below

Activity Instructions: After students have learned about both processes, allow students time to compare and contrast photosynthesis and cell respiration. Students often get confused by the similarities of the topics but can’t always pinpoint where they are similar or different. This activity will open up discussion to find out where students are having trouble.

Worksheet: Photosynthesis and Cellular Respiration Worksheet