Medical Biology Lab 12: Cycling of Matter & Energy Flow - Durable
a. Modeling Energy Flow
- Student groups will simulate the flow of energy through a food chain. Cups with a small hole in the bottom are used to represent organisms in the food chain, and water represents the energy. Students move energy through the food chain relay-style, and calculate the amount of energy lost at each step.
b. Food Webs, Biomass, & Energy
- Students will construct a food web consisting of organisms from the chaparral or rainforest biome. Each organism in the food web is equipped with information about its population, biomass, and energy contribution within a specific ecosystem. After the food web has been built, students use this information to calculate and create a pyramid of numbers, biomass pyramid, and energy pyramid for the ecosystem.
c. Energy Density and Weight Management
- Students investigate how the food we consume, and therefore the energy we consume, impacts our health and can lead to obesity. Our diet should work to maintain a balance between the energy we consume, the energy we use, and the energy we store. When our diet is imbalanced, our weight and overall health can fluctuate. Students read the article from the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention called “Low-Energy-Dense Foods and Weight Management: Cutting Calories While Controlling Hunger” and answer provided questions.
Items included in this lab are listed below.
Cups 18 oz, Waterproof Organism labels, Student packet.
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