Life Requires Free Energy

Free energy, get your free energy here! Learners see that all organisms require free energy, which comes from the sun. The lesson explains the first two laws of thermodynamics and then analyzes metabolism, via glycolysis, on a very simple level. It then explains the role of free energy in life and its processes — to organize, to grow, to reproduce, to store energy, and to maintain homeostasis. 

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Have learners research more about free energy and share with class
Classroom Considerations

  • Watch video on Gibbs Free Energy first
  • Class must have a computer, Internet access, and projection system
  • Part 24 in a series of 37
Pros

  • Includes concept map, slideshow, and review worksheet
  • Contains a link to previous videos
  • Provides a simple introduction to glycolysis
  • Fascinating story about Easter Island engages pupils
Cons

  • None
Common Core

NGSS