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Using Models to Understand Cellular Respiration

In both versions of the Student Handout, students analyze two models of cellular respiration. The first model shows chemical equations that summarize the inputs and outputs of cellular respiration. The second model is a figure that shows the three major stages of cellular respiration and the role of mitochondria.

After students analyze these models, they use what they have learned to develop their own more complete model of cellular respiration.

Then, in the advanced version of the Student Handout, students analyze how the extensive, folded inner membrane of a mitochondrion contributes to ATP production. This analysis illustrates the general principle that structure is related to function.

The simpler version of the Student Handout is available in the first two attached files and in a Google Doc. The advanced version of the Student Handout is available in the third and fourth attached files and in a Google Doc. The Teacher Notes, available in the last two attached files, provide background information and instructional suggestions and explain how this activity is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards.

cellular respiration model SHO simpler.docx2.39 MB
cellular respiration model SHO simpler.pdf467.07 KB
cellular respiration model SHO advanced.docx3.33 MB
cellular respiration model SHO advanced.pdf650.58 KB
cellular respiration model TN.docx2.2 MB
cellular respiration model TN.pdf636.02 KB


iwaldron's picture

2023 revision

I have created a simpler version of the Student Handout, which begins with a context for cellular respiration in humans. I have also clarified many of the explanations and questions in both versions of the Student Handout. The Teacher Notes have also been clarified and updated.

Tanya Dsouza's picture

Access to the simple version with context

Can i have access to this version

iwaldron's picture

Simpler version

Please click on the above file labeled "SHO Simpler".


iwaldron's picture

2020 revision

The Student Handout has been reorganized to incorporate the best features of the former longer and shorter versions. Also, the revised Student Handout has a clearer explanation of the relationship between mitochondrial structure and function.

iwaldron's picture

2019 revision

The shorter version of the Student Handout has the same basic content as the previous version, but it has been reorganized, with revised questions and figure, to improve student understanding. The longer version of the Student Handout has a new section where students analyze the relationship between the structure and function of mitochondria.

Herb Buckland's picture

Downloading content

In as much as Microstoft would like to make MS word a common program for everyone to use... and thus purchase from them, it is not universally liked nor used. Hence, usage of a program such as MS word detracts from a Universal ability for everyone to make your desirable information useful to them and their students because it acts as a stumbling block similar to needing a particularlized pass code. Without such a pass code viewers are forced to go elsewhere for the information.

iwaldron's picture

Free alternatives to Microsoft Word

You can either use the PDF (if you are not making changes to the Student Handout) or you can use one of several free programs that will open a Word document (eg or Google Docs).


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