UEN Security Office
Technical Services Support Center (TSSC)
Eccles Broadcast Center
101 Wasatch Drive
Salt Lake City, UT 84112
(801) 585-6105 (fax)
Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
Student Prior Knowledge:
Intended Learning Outcomes:
Begin lesson by reviewing the four important facts about carbon with students, from the end of “What is Carbon?” lesson.
Introduce the concept of a model. A model is designed to simulate an often difficult to see process. Since it is very difficult, time-consuming and expensive to track an atom of carbon (scientists do this!!), the class will instead model how an atom of carbon cycles through Earth’s ecosystem by acting out and/or drawing boxes and lines in their science notebooks.
Below is a list of boxes (subjects) that students will need to have in their carbon cycle model. Provide this list to the students:
At this point, there are two ways to proceed with the lesson. For a more interactive lesson, continue reading this paragraph. If you rather not have an interactive lesson, skip down to the next step. For an interactive lesson, have print outs of each of the subjects listed above. Break students up into five groups, or have five students volunteer to help. Next, using Frisbee discs or other items to represent carbon, model the carbon atom move through its cycle starting in the atmosphere. Be sure to highlight the FORM carbon takes at each subject, and be sure to classify the process that must occur when carbon “moves” to the next subject.
Now have students take out their science notebooks and draw the carbon cycle model together. Start the model by drawing the Atmosphere box at the top of the page. Ask students what form carbon takes in the atmosphere (carbon dioxide). Continue to add to your model by adding boxes, labeling the subjects, and also adding lines (processes). Be sure to highlight the FORM of carbon at each box, to help students identify the process that must occur for carbon to continue moving through the system.
Once the model is complete, have students count the number of lines/processes in the model. Where do they go? Are there any patterns regarding where the lines go? Lead students to see that only ONE line leaves the atmosphere, whereas 4-5 lines enter the atmosphere. Discuss the importance of having a balanced or unbalanced cycle, and what implications this had for Earth (i.e., human use of fossil fuels have greatly offset the balance of the carbon cycle).
Strategies For Diverse Learners:
Created Date :