Energy, Matter, and Organization: Potato Catalase Lab

We began the lesson with students reflecting back on the vocabulary words they learned on Monday (enzyme, reactant, and product).  Students used the vocabulary to describe the chemical equation written on the board.  The equation showed the enzyme catalase converting the reactant hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into the products water (H2O) and oxygen (O2). Students then learned that catalase is an enzyme found in animals and potatoes.  The enzyme has one of the fastest known reaction rates, converting 5 million H2O2 molecules into H2O and O2 every second!  Students learned that we would be conducting an experiment with potatos to measure the rate of oxygen gas produced from the reaction of potato catalase with hydrogen peroxide.  After writing down the procedure and watching a demonstration of the steps, students were assigned to groups and worked through the experiment, collecting initial and final temperature readings, as well as the change in oxygen percentage released over 10 minutes.  Once the experiment was underway, students who were not actively timing or recording the results were assigned the job of typing up the procedure using the Chromebooks.  We will analyze the results tomorrow.

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