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The role organelles play in a cell is compared here to the function of bicycle parts




9, 10, 11, 12  

Title – Cell Organelles
By – Danielle Stevens
Primary Subject – Science
Grade Level – 9-12
Unit – Cells in Living Things


    Students will be able to explain the role of organelles in cells by completing an activity.

Overall Question:

    What role do organelles play in the cell?


      Students will be asked to draw a picture of a bicycle. After everyone has had an opportunity to draw their picture, as a class we will compile a list of the parts of the bicycle.
      Parts of a bicycle





        Wheels, etc…


      Students will then be asked questions that would require them to think about the importance of each part of a bicycle. For example, if you take away the wheels will the bicycle work properly? What if you take away the seat?
    At the end of this type of questioning sequence, students should realize that the parts of the bicycle have important roles that help the bicycle work properly. I will then say to students: “Just as the bicycle is made of parts that are important to its operation, cells are also made of parts called organelles. Organelles have specific roles that they play in the cell in order for the cell to operate properly.”


      Students will work in pairs to view prepared slides of cells. These slides should have the organelles dyed so that the students will be able to see them easily. Students will be asked to draw the structures that they were able to see in the slide of the cell under the microscope.
    We will discuss the observations that they made. They should be able to conclude that cells are indeed made up of parts/organelles.


      Students will then be given a list of organelles and they have to write the function of the organelle next to it. This chart will be accompanied with a labeled diagram of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells. Before they complete the table, they can try to label their observations of organelles using the diagram that I provided. They can complete the table after they can no longer label anymore of the parts that they observed.
Organelles           Functions          


    We will go over the functions and discuss the importance of each. We will essential do the same thing for the organelles as we did for the parts of the bike. For example: if we take away the lysosome will the cell be able to work properly? Will it be able to break down large molecules? If it cannot break down large molecules what will happen to the cell? Etc…


    Students will be asked to relate the organelles of the cell to the parts of a city. I will give them a list of the parts that make up a city and their role. Students will have to match an organelle to each part of the city and explain how the two are alike. For example: The solar power plant would be similar to the chloroplast of the cells because they both use the sun’s energy to produce energy for a system (the system for the chloroplast is the cell and for the solar power plant is the city). The city limits is similar to the cell membrane because they both allow certain things to enter and exit a system.


    Students will take a short quiz on organelles and their function.


    Students will read an article about the mitochondrial disorder.


    This lesson was prepared from ideas that I have received from various sources.

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