Biofuels
Mar 20 2011
TeachEngineeringDigitalLibrary's picture
Source: TeachEngineering Digital Library
4.142855
Summary Information

Keywords:

biofuel, ethanol, fermentation, alternative energy
Topic: 
Measurement
Biology
Chemistry

Target Grade (Ages):

Grade 8 (Ages 13-14)

Estimated Time Required:

3-5 hours

Diversity Indicators:

Students with limited motor skills may have difficulty manipulating the balloon or grinding ingredients.

Tab Wrapper

0
Average: 4.1 (7 votes)

Comments

ckilts's picture

March 17, 2012 - 9:01pm

Wonderful idea

This is a really exciting, designed based lab. At times, it's hard in a biology or chemistry class to come up with design challenges that naturally fit into the curriculum. This lesson plan fits into a variety of different bio/chem units. It also allows students to relate the material that they cover in class to a real world design issue. I would like to see an extension on this project for determining the actual amount of ethanol in the products. It also would be interesting to see which product is easiest to distill ethanol from.
rsinghal50's picture

May 11, 2012 - 8:13am

Rubrics

My students did something like this last year. The problem they explored was which foods produced most gas, in terms of flatulence. The group discussed which foods were most gassy, beans or broccoli. They added hydrochloric acid to mimic stomach acid in their experiment. It is easier for the students to measure the circumference of the balloons with a string and measure the string. I cannot access the rubrics on word. Only the rubric on the pdf document is accessible. And the rubric on the excel document is for the biodome and there seems to be some problem with formatting!
rsinghal50's picture

May 20, 2012 - 3:29pm

Student discussion on energy sources

http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=265974&title=Which_source_of_energy&ref=rsinghal In this video, students discussed the advantages and disadvantages of the different sources of energy. It highlights some student misunderstandings and can be used as a resource to find teachable points. While videotaping this I realized that though students used the internet to research the sources of energy, they did not quite understand what they were reading. Teachers must give students reliable websites at their competency level so they understand completely what they read.
mcgaffin's picture

October 31, 2012 - 6:37pm

Going to try this for energetics/ecology lesson

I think I might set this experiment up during my next unit on energetics (cellular respiration, photosynthesis and fermentation). It would be a great way to help kids "see" that there are sugars in plants and that yeast uses fermentation to access those sugars. I will come back to this lesson again during our ecology unit when we discuss the problems with fossil fuels and other alternative energies.
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