Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Cellular Cellebrities

Susan Goodman

Description

Students work in cooperative groups to learn the morphology and function of organelles within plant and animal cells.

Objectives

The student understands that there are structures with particular functions that are unique to certain types of cells (for example, plant cells have cell walls, animal cells do not).

The student knows the functions of structures in plant and animal cells.

Materials

-Level-appropriate, district-approved science textbooks
-Overhead transparency of a plant cell and an animal cell
-Encyclopedias
-Science magazines/articles on plant and animal cells
-Computer with Internet access
-Printer
-Poster board for each student (9” x 12”)
-Colored markers
-Glue
-Scissors
-20 Index cards (3” x 5”)
-Overhead projector
-Cellular Cellebrities Chart (See Associated File)
-Cellular Cellebrities Group Participation Self-Assessment (See Associated File)
-Checklist to Assess Student Participation in Cellular Cellebrities Group (See Associated File)
-Rubric to Assess Cellular Cellebrities Chart (See Associated File)

Preparations

1. Label 20 3” x 5” cards: A-1, A-2, A-3, A-4, B-1, B-2, B-3, B-4,…E-4.
2. Gather materials.
3. Make copies of the Cellular Cellebrities Chart found in the associated file.
4. Make copies of the Cellular Cellebrities Group Participation Self-Assessment found in the associated file.
5. Make copies of the Checklist to Assess Student Participation in Cellular Cellebrities Group found in the associated file.
6. Make copies of the Rubric to Assess Cellular Cellebrities Chart found in the associated file.

Procedures

To gain the students’ attention and to reinforce the principle that the human body is organized in levels of organisms, systems, organs, tissues and cells:

1. Ask a student volunteer to come and stand in front of the class.

2. Ask the rest of the class to use their observational skills to describe the morphology of this student. (The class responds by describing height, hair color, skin color, description of articles of clothing, etc.)

3. Now ask the class to describe how this human is organized. Students give various responses: head that encloses a brain, skin that encloses a skeleton and organs, organs made up of tissue, and tissues composed of cells, etc.

4. Ask the student to give you one of his/her shoes. Ask the rest of the class to describe the effect upon this human when the shoe is missing.

5. Now ask the student to give you his/her brain. When the class protests (hopefully!!), ask “Why not?” “What is the effect upon this human when the brain is missing?”

Introduce the lesson:
1. We observed this specimen (the student) at the level of organism, systems, organs, tissues and cells. Today we will focus our study at the cellular level. We will make some observations about the morphology of plant and animal cells, and we will work in groups to study each organelle of the cell in depth. Each of you will become an expert on one organelle of the cell. You will prepare a visual which will help you teach other students in a Cellular Cellebrities Group.

2. Give each student a copy of the Cellular Cellebrities Chart. (See Associated File)

3. Direct your students’ attention to a model(s) or a transparency(ies) of a plant cell and an animal cell. Ask the students to use their observational skills to describe the morphology of each cell. What are the differences they notice between the plant and animal cells?

4. As you point out the various parts of the cell (cell membrane, cell wall, nucleus, cytoplasm, mitochondria), write the name of the organelle on the board or on the transparency and direct your students to write the name of the organelle or structure in the appropriate box in the Cellular Cellebrities Chart.

5. As you point out each organelle or structure, ask the students: What do we want to know about this organelle (or structure)? Have the students agree on five questions and write their questions in the appropriate box in the chart.

6. Break the students into 5 heterogeneous expert groups (A,B,C,D,E) of 4-6 students.

7. Assign an organelle or structure to each group:
Expert Group A = Cell membrane
Expert Group B = Cell wall
Expert Group C = Nucleus
Expert Group D = Cytoplasm
Expert Group E = Mitochondria

8. Assign roles in the expert group. Give each student one of the 3” x 5” cards you have previously numbered. In the A group, give A-1 or A-2 or A-3 or A-4 to each student. If your groups have more than 4 members, have the extra group members “buddy” with another member of the group. Give members of the B group B-1, B-2, B-3, B-4. Do the same with Groups C, D and E.

9. Explain the roles within the group:
#1 is the Coordinator. This student makes certain that each member of the group understands how the resources will be used by each member of the group. This student also asks for questions about the group’s findings.
#2 is the Secretary. This student records the group’s findings.
#3 is the Timekeeper. This student keeps the group on task and calls the group back together at the appropriate times.
#4 is the Supply Officer. This student makes sure the group has the supplies needed to make the visuals and returns any unused supplies to the appropriate storage area.

10. Direct the Coordinator of each group to assign research tasks to the members of the group. One student uses the Internet, one student researches the text, one student researches encyclopedias, one student uses magazines, etc. Allow 1 minute to assign tasks.

11. Direct the groups to begin their research using the assigned resources. Allow 20 minutes. Remind the Timekeepers to keep track of the time. After 20 minutes, ask the Timekeepers if their groups need more time. Allow 10 more minutes, if necessary. After 10 minutes, direct the Timekeepers to assemble the members of their group.

12. When the groups have assembled, direct Expert #1 to share their findings with the rest of the group. Allow 1-2 minutes.

13. Direct Expert #2 to share their findings with the rest of the group. Allow 1-2 minutes.

14. Direct Expert #3 to share their findings with the group. Allow 1-2 minutes.

15. Direct Expert #4 to share their findings with the group. Allow 1-2 minutes.

16. Direct the Coordinator to ask for questions from group members. Allow 1-2 minutes.

17. Direct the Expert Groups to write 5 sentences summarizing their findings. Have the Secretary record these sentences. Each member should write these sentences in the appropriate box in the chart. The group should also answer the following question and include the answer on the visual: What would happen if this organelle or structure were missing from the cell? Allow 5 minutes.

18. Have the Supply Officer gather poster supplies for the group.

19. Direct the members of each group to make a poster board that includes the name of the organelle or structure, the summarizing sentences, and the group’s answer to the hypothetical question. Each member (or buddy-pair) is to make their own poster. Allow 10-15 minutes.

20. Regroup the students into Cellular Cellebrities groups as follows:
All #1s together in one group.
All #2s together in one group.
All #3s together in one group.
All #4s together in one group.

21. Direct the mitochondria expert to share his group’s findings using the visual he made. Direct the other students to fill in the chart. Allow 1-2 minutes.

22. Direct the mitochondria expert to ask for questions.

23. Direct the cell membrane expert to share his group’s findings using the visual he made. Direct the other students to fill in the chart. Allow 1-2 minutes.

24. Direct the cell membrane expert to ask for questions.

25. Direct the cell wall expert to share his group’s findings using the visual he made. Direct the other students to fill in the chart. Allow 1-2 minutes.

26. Direct the cell wall expert to ask for questions.

27. Direct the cytoplasm expert to share his group’s findings using the visual he made. Direct the other students to fill in the chart. Allow 1-2 minutes.

28. Direct the cytoplasm expert to ask for questions.

29. Direct the nucleus expert to share his group’s findings using the visual he made. Direct the other students to fill in the chart. Allow 1-2 minutes.

30. Direct the nucleus expert to ask for questions.

31. Direct the group to rank the organelles/structures in order of importance in the cell.

32. Direct the Cellular Cellebrities groups to write a poem that summarizes what they have learned about cellular structures and organelles. Allow 10 minutes.

33. Ask the group to stand in a line that reflects the order of importance they defined in the group. Have one member share the reasoning used to arrive at their ranking. Allow the groups to recite the poems they have written to the rest of the class.

34. Allow the students to answer the group assessment questions on the Cellular Cellebrities Group Participation Self-Assessment. (See Associated File)

Repeat this lesson for 5 other organelles and structures: Endoplasmic reticulum, chloroplasts, Golgi apparatus, vacuoles, and lysosomes.

Assessments

1. At the completion of the activity, gather students for review. Ask students to respond orally to questions using an unlabelled transparency (or slide) of the cell as a visual aid. Have the students refer to their Cellular Cellebrities Chart for help, if necessary.

2. Assess Cellular Cellebrities Chart according to the rubric found in the associated file.

3. Students self-assess cooperative learning skills by writing reflectively about their experience in the group using the Cellular Cellebrities Group Participation Self-Assessment tool provided in the associated file.

4. Teacher assesses student performance in the group by monitoring students’ activities in the groups. A Checklist to Assess Student Participation in Cellular Cellebrities Group is provided in the associated file.

Extensions

1. By working in cooperative groups, the ESOL student is supported.
2. Through the use of visuals and group work, the ESE student is supported.
3. If students have difficulty completing the Cellular Cellebrities Group Participation Self-Assessment, they can be paired with another student from the group.
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