Use this lesson plan to structure a lesson on the carbon cycle for your 11–14 students

An illustration of Earth, a thermometer, a forest fire and a polluting factory

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Knowledge of the carbon cycle is integral to understanding how chemistry can help mitigate climate change

It has never been more vital for students to learn about the role of carbon in our world and for teaching of this topic to be engaging and inspiring. Use this lesson plan with your 11–14 students to engage them with the carbon cycle.

Start off with the starter slide, using some simple questions to probe prior knowledge. As the first main activity, have students play the carbon cycle game, taking on the role of a carbon atom. They move around different stations, filling out a passport worksheet as they go.

Then, ask them to use their passport worksheet to produce their own diagram of a carbon cycle, which can be scaffolded as a card sort or cut-and-stick activity. Finally, consolidate their knowledge with some discussion questions.

Use this resource alongside the Education in Chemistry article How to teach the carbon cycle at 11–14.