It is important that we don’t view our students as empty vessels or blank slates when they come into our classrooms. Students are full of their own ideas and theories about the world. Some of these are correct and some of them don’t agree with current evidence and agreed thinking within a subject. Often as educators, we can fail to appreciate the wide and varied experiences our students have had and the effect this can have on how they think the universe works. Students have misconceptions in all subjects, but this is especially true in Science.
Carbon is an element that is present in all living things, and is a part of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. It is constantly recycled on our planet, moving from the atmosphere to living things and back to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide. Carbon can also be passed between living things when one organism eats another. Known as the Carbon Cycle, this recycling process is composed of a number of steps that cycle carbon through the biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and geosphere.