Photosynthesis for Kids

Photosynthesis Worksheet and Game

Teach the concept of photosynthesis for kids in 4th to 8th grade with the molecules and photosynthesis worksheet.

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Botany Unit Study

Print the Photosynthesis Worksheet

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This is MatchCard #7 of the Botany Unit Study.

Photosynthesis Lesson and MatchCard for Kids

Objective: Explain what photosynthesis is and what is needed for it to take place.

MatchCard: Download below.

Students will use the MatchCard Information Pieces to demonstrate how carbon dioxide and water are converted to oxygen and glucose in the presence of sunlight.

Use coins, tokens, or cereal pieces to construct molecules. Play the game and see how quick students can rearrange the atoms to mimic the process of photosynthesis.

What Is Photosynthesis?


Photosynthesis occurs in the chloroplasts of a plant cell. It is the process of turning water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and glucose.

What is Needed for Photosynthesis to Take Place
Photosynthesis requires:

Make Your Molecules

Water and Carbon Dioxide Molecules

To begin with, students will construct the carbon dioxide and water molecules. We use 12 pennies, 18 nickles, and 6 dimes to do this. (You may also use the paper hole punches from three different colors of paper if you choose. They are harder to handle though.)

Sunlight Needed


Sunlight is the catalyst that makes photosynthesis happen. Without sunlight, plants would not make oxygen, and we would suffocate.

If something is required for a chemical reaction to occur, it is written above the arrow between the starting and ending chemical forumlas. In this case, sunlight would is needed. The diagram of the sun should be added to the chemical equation to show it is needed.

On Your Mark, Get Set

formula of photosynthesis
The plants not only make oxygen, they make something else important for our survival. Let them take a few guesses what that might be.

Plants also make glucose (sugar.) Not just the sweet stuff we find in candy and cookies, but the important sugars that we need to eat for energy. Plants give us our most abundant nutrient as well as our oxygen.

Show the students how the atoms in the molecules are rearranged to produce one glucose (C6H12O2) and six oxygen (O2) molecules.


Glucose and Oxygen Molecules

After your student(s) has arranged and re-arranged the molecules using the diagram several times, see if it can be done without the formula.

With more than one student, you can make a game to see who can do it the fastest.

Photosynthesis Projects for Kids

Bubble Up

Ever watched the bubbles in soda? Plants will also produce "bubbles" of oxygen.

Use pond weed or an underwater aquarium plant available at an aquarium shop. Put it in a narrow glass jar that is filled with water. A test tube will work well with small plants.

Now put the jar in sunlight. Watch the bubbles that form as the chloroplasts turn carbon dioxide into oxygen.

Science Fair Experiments

You can partially measure the rate of photosynthesis by counting the speed of bubbles (how many bubbles produced in 15 seconds.) If you have enough plants, you can put a balloon over the container to catch the oxygen and measure it by weight.

Can you formulate an experiment to see if the rate of photosynthesis is altered by any of these factors?

MatchCard Science

How To Use MatchCards


MatchCards make science concepts and corresponding vocabulary interactive. As students move the information pieces on the MatchCards they review the material they have already learned.

Download the FREE MatchCard Science Instructor's Guide and see how MatchCards can make building their science knowledge base fun.

Botany Unit Study

Botany Unit Study Cover

Watch their green thumb sprout when kids use the MatchCard Science Botany Unit Study to learn about the plants all around us.

Check out our entire Botany Unit Study with 11 objectives.

12 Science Unit Studies

MatchCard Science Cover

Chemistry is only one of twelve complete unit studies for kids in 3rd to 8th grade.

Comprehensive objectives, hands-on projects, suggested science fair experiments, and the fun game-like MatchCards keep them interested in learning science. See all twelve MatchCard Science Unit Studies.

Ready To Use Resources

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