Unfortunately, in all the years I’ve been teaching photosynthesis and respiration, I’ve never had a group of students come to me with much of a background in chemistry.
I’ve approached this problem a lot of different ways, including teaching a 2 week crash course in chemistry. What we really need is for the students to have an understanding of the Law of Conservation of Mass as well as the concept that molecules exist and molecules are made of atoms and those atoms can be rearranged. Simple, right? Not so much.
This lab has been my latest solution to this unique situation. How do you teach photosynthesis? Do your students come to you with or without chemistry backgrounds? What do you do if they don’t?