Activities

Cellular Respiration

Explore how your body converts the chemical energy of glucose into the chemical energy of ATP.

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Requirements

This activity requires the Java Runtime Environment version 5 (sometimes referred to as 1.5) or later with Java Webstart. You can download it at java.com.

Cellular respiration is the process by which our bodies convert glucose from food into energy in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). Start by exploring the ATP molecule in 3D, then use molecular models to take a step-by-step tour of the chemical reactants and products in the complex biological processes of glycolysis, the Krebs cycle, the Electron Transport Chain, and ATP synthesis. Follow atoms as they rearrange and become parts of other molecules and witness the production of high-energy ATP molecules.

Note: it is not expected that students memorize every step of glycolysis, the Krebs cycle, or the Electron Transport Chain. The goal of this activity is to have students understand the different reactions of cellular respiration, including the importance of enzymes to the reactions; students should also learn that energy in one form is converted or transferred to other forms and places.

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AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008)

4. The Physical Setting

4E. Energy Transformations
  • 4E/H1*. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that although the various forms of energy appear very different, each can be measured in a way that makes it possible to keep track of how much of one form is converted into another. Whenever the amount of energy in one place diminishes, the amount in other places or forms increases by the same amount.
  • 4E/H4*. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that chemical energy is associated with the configuration of atoms in molecules that make up a substance. Some changes of configuration require a net input of energy whereas others cause a net release.
4G. Forces of Nature
  • 4G/H2b*. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that at the atomic level, electric forces between electrons and protons in atoms hold molecules together and thus are involved in all chemical reactions.

5. The Living Environment

5C. Cells
  • 5C/H2a. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that within the cells are specialized parts for the transport of materials, energy capture and release, protein building, waste disposal, passing information, and even movement.
  • 5C/H3. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that the work of the cell is carried out by the many different types of molecules it assembles, mostly proteins. Protein molecules are long, usually folded chains made from 20 different kinds of amino acid molecules. The function of each protein molecule depends on its specific sequence of amino acids and its shape. The shape of the chain is a consequence of attractions between its parts.
  • 5C/H5. By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that complex interactions among the different kinds of molecules in the cell cause distinct cycles of activities, such as growth and division. Cell behavior can also be affected by molecules from other parts of the organism or even other organisms.
  • 5C/H9** (SFAA). By the end of the 12th grade, students should know that some protein molecules assist in replicating genetic information, repairing cell structures, helping other molecules get in or out of the cell, and generally catalyzing and regulating molecular interactions.

11. Common Themes

11B. Models
  • 11B/M4** (BSL). By the end of the 8th grade, students should know that simulations are often useful in modeling events and processes.

Copyright
© Copyright The Concord Consortium

Record Link
<a href="stem-resources/cellular-respiration">The Concord Consortium. Cellular Respiration. Concord: The Concord Consortium, 2010, September 10.</a>

AIP
Cellular Respiration (The Concord Consortium, Concord, 2010, September 10), WWW Document, (http://concord.org/stem-resources/cellular-respiration).

AJP
Cellular Respiration (The Concord Consortium, Concord, 2010, September 10), WWW Document, (http://concord.org/stem-resources/cellular-respiration).

APA
Cellular Respiration. (2010, September 10). Retrieved 2014, October 24, from The Concord Consortium: http://concord.org/stem-resources/cellular-respiration

Disclaimer: The Concord Consortium offers citation styles as a guide only. We cannot offer interpretations about citations as this is an automated procedure.

Requirements

This activity requires the Java Runtime Environment version 5 (sometimes referred to as 1.5) or later with Java Webstart. You can download it at java.com.

The download for this activity will require 67 KB of disk space.

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Science of Atoms and MoleculesThis resource is a part of the Concord Consortium's Science of Atoms and Molecules project.

Grade Level
High School, Higher Education
Subject
Biology
Focus Area
Modeling and Simulation
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