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3.1: Planning

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12
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Key Ideas

  • Cell parts and organelles are responsible for the specific functions of eukaryotic cells.
  • The cell membrane is composed of a bilayer of lipids and proteins arranged in an orderly manner.
  • The substances that go into or out of a cell are determined by the structure of the cell membrane.


Building from the general introduction to cells and their functions in the previous section, students explore the major parts and organelles of a eukaryotic cell. They investigate the composition of the cell membrane in detail and its function in controlling what substances move into and out of the cell. Students design and build a 3-D model of a eukaryotic cell. They also simulate the movement of proteins embedded within the cell membrane by observing large soap bubbles.



identify the location and function of the major organelles of a cell.

describe the unique characteristics of the cell membrane including the arrangement of the proteins and lipids.

determine the relationship among mitochondria, sugar, and ATP.

explain how ribosomes, the endoplasmic reticulum, and the Golgi apparatus are related to the production and transport of proteins.


adenosine triphosphate (ATP), cell membrane, chromosomes, cytoplasm, DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid), endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, mitochondria, nucleus, organelles, ribosomes

Student Materials

Activity 2-1: Making a Cell Model

  • Activity Report
  • Determined by each team, with teacher approval

Teacher Materials

Activity 2-1: Making a Cell Model

  • Activity Report Answer Key
  • Be sure to guide students to select materials that will not spoil.
  • Cell parts or organelles can be represented by a variety of materials, such uncooked pasta; dried fruit; plaster of paris or clay models
  • Possible materials for the cell membrane include a shoe box, plastic jug, or plastic bag
  • Cell models, diagrams, and/or charts

Advance Preparation

See Activity 2-1 in the Student Edition.

Activity 2-1: Making a Cell Model

  • Allow ample time for students to collect their own materials and to add other materials as needed for their model cell.
  • Plan ahead for storage of completed cell models.

Interdisciplinary Connection

Art Students make models of different cell types (nerve cell, muscle cell, etc.).

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