A chemical equation for photosynthesis

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Compiled By: Bookmark and Share Teaching the concept of photosynthesis can be difficult. Here are some activities teachers have used to make it a little easier to understand.

Posted by:Lorelei #143314 Print this Item Clip to ScrapBookReport this item
I teach Photosynthesis to my 4th graders and compare it to making sugar cookies. I tell them that they need certain ingredients to make cookies and you need certain ingredients to make Photosynthesis happen. We list the "ingredients" and then I compare the sun (light) for Photo to the heat of the oven (since you need light for Photosynthesis to get going and you need the oven for the cookies to bake.)
So once the cookies bake, you have the final product...well in Photosynthesis once the process takes place the end result is sugar(cookie) and oxygen. I tell the students that when you make cookies you can smell them. The smell eventually goes away...I compare that to Oxygen being made but it is a waste doesn't stay.

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Posted by:love5th #138165 Print this Item Clip to ScrapBookReport this item
First I have my 5th graders tell me what they ate the night before. We make a list on the board. Then I ask them if they've ever seen a flower or tree eat any of these items. They all laugh and of course say "no". So I ask them how plants get food.
Next I share the "recipe" for photosynthesis. Sun+Water+CO2=photosynthesis You could have them make recipe cards for plants, using their own creative words for the ingredients and directions for plants to make food. I have them draw pictures too. If you want they could do it on paper and then combine them to make a cookbook for your class plants (if you have them like I do)
I find that this just makes it a little more simplistic and puts it in terms they can understand.

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Photosynthesis Play
Posted by:KathyB #133689 Print this Item Clip to ScrapBookReport this item
When teaching photosynthesis to my fourth grade students I had them perform a play. Students created a name tag (10 x 10 of cardboard) which I put yarn on and they wear. The parts are sun, plant, water, carbon dioxide, energy, oxygen, sugar and a narrator. The sun stands on a stool sending his energy to the plant. The energy, water and carbon dioxide go around the plant and then sit down so that the products of oxygen and sugar can shine. The narrator explains the whole process but each part must also be able to explain his/her role. My students absolutely loved performing and rarely did I have a group that couldn't explin photosynthesis via a diagram or paragraph.

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Posted by:volstate #143316 Print this Item Clip to ScrapBookReport this item
I begin by teaching about the needs of plants. We then learn about the different plant parts. It is helpful if students can have different plants to look at and practice locating parts like stamen and pistal. I teach photosynthesis through comparing it to a factory. During the learning, students will label an organizer, watch video clips, and complete a photosynthesis comparision page. My students are exposed to the material in a variety of methods so that various learning styles can be addressed. is a creat site to help find ideas on how to teach the content so that is fun and appropriate.

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