Students Break Down Processes of Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis

Students Break Down Processes of Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis photo
Students Break Down Processes of Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis photo 2
Students Break Down Processes of Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis photo 3
When science teacher Peter Wilson created a Hopscotch-like game on his classroom floor using masking tape and signs that read “sugar,” “oxygen,” “cellular respiration,” “carbon dioxide,” “water,” “energy” and “photosynthesis,” he had one mission. His goal was to help his sixth grade students visualize and master the complex concepts of the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration. 

“An important and helpful aspect of photosynthesis and cellular respiration is that chemically, they are basically the reverse of each other,” Wilson said. “Using an activity similar to Hopscotch addresses some of the challenges of learning the topic by having a visual reference of the processes that the students are physically moving through as they state the chemistry of each step out loud.” 

Wilson said the concepts of photosynthesis and cellular respiration can be challenging to learn because one cannot directly observe either process happening. In addition, the students were introduced to new vocabulary and terminology that are complex and abstract. But despite the challenges, the students successfully mastered the concepts thanks to the visual activity. 

“The students were hopping to and from, saying the steps of each process out loud, and they didn't even realize they were memorizing both processes,” Wilson said.