Mar 20 2011
TeachEngineeringDigitalLibrary's picture
Source: TeachEngineerin...
Summary Information


biofuel, ethanol, fermentation, alternative energy
Workplace Skills: 
Raising Questions
Secondary Research
Planning investigation
Recording & Reporting

Estimated Time Required:

3-5 hours

Target Grade (Ages):

Grade 8 (Ages 13-14)

Diversity Indicators:

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

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Your Rating: 
Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (15 votes)


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


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 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.
basma's picture

June 7, 2014 - 6:41am

this is a great work, i am

this is a great work, i am really facinated. yet i think it need more work on assessments. in pre, imbedded, post assessments a suitable alternative assessment tools should be used and specified to measure the complex learning outcomes. assessment should take a larger area in your lesson plan in order to collect more evidences on your student understanding, and so you could make sure about achieving yor objectives.
P Jawahar's picture

October 28, 2014 - 2:58am

It is nice and very useful

It is nice and very useful project. By the way of simple process the student will easyly able to understand about biofuels.
ashokkumar's picture

November 11, 2014 - 12:03am

nice one

nice one
jeba's picture

November 11, 2014 - 12:05am

It is useful for the teachers

It is useful for the teachers as well as for students
sowmiyakala's picture

February 27, 2015 - 2:23am

It is very easy to understand

It is very easy to understand. Good job.
Kalaiyarasan's picture

March 4, 2015 - 12:14am

It is very nice project. it

It is very nice project. it is useful to our life
shanthi1's picture

March 4, 2015 - 4:03am

Your project is very nice

Your project is very nice
nmuthupriya narayanan's picture

March 17, 2015 - 5:09am

Different work....

Different work.... This work is different . I like this...
seemajayadhas's picture

March 17, 2015 - 5:42am