Root Depth Model

Middle School
High School
Stand-Alone Activity

In this activity, raffia ribbon is used to create a visual representation of the differing root depths in biofuel crops and prairie plants. The wall hanging can be used to promote discussion about plants’ ability to sequester carbon and contribute to soil carbon. Extend the learning by combining this activity with The Science of Farming research story, Growing Energy data dive, Biomass Yield and Root Growth in Crops field investigations, Bioenergy Farm Game, and Fields of Fuel computer game.

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Environmental Science
Carbon Cycle & Climate Change
Plants & Photosynthesis
Carbon cycle, carbon sequestration, photosynthesis, structure and function, modeling, annual vs perennial, plant community ecology
Prior Knowledge
Basic knowledge of plant anatomy and physiology, characteristics of annual vs. perennial crops, photosynthesis, and carbon cycle
Time Required
One or two 50-minute class periods
Required Supplies
Paper/Cardstock, Paper Cutter (optional), Scissors, Tape, Raffia Ribbon