This investigation was designed for 9th grade biology, where students are given very basic information about how photosynthesis works. Traditional experiments on plant growth and light can take several weeks to complete, whereas this virtual experiment can be completed in about 1 hour. Students are given instructions on how to run the simulator at bit.ly/pholab which includes growing three different types of plants under different colors of lights. Students gather data by using a ruler to measure plant height and computing averages.
Part 2 of this investigation asks students to use another simulator (biol.co/weedsim) that shows bubbles being released by an animated plant in response to changes in light intensity, carbon levels, and temperature.
Grade Level: 8-10 | Time Required: 1- 1.5 hours
HS-LS1-5 Use a model to illustrate how photosynthesis transforms light energy into stored chemical energy.