This lesson will allow students to utilize the Internet as a resource in researching Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells. Students will be able to state the similarities and differences of these cell types, as well as be familiar with the Symbiotic Theory. Students will develop group work skills as well as their computer skills.


Class will discuss cells in general. Students will contribute what information they know already about cells. Students will then be paired off and given the Cell Scavenger Hunt Handout, which they will complete by utilizing the Internet. Each pair of students will also create a diagram of one type of cell and list the differences of that type with the other. Pairs that have diagrammed one type of cell will then match up with a pair of the other type. Each pair will present its diagram and comparison to the other. Possibilities for further research include symbiotic theory and in-depth studies of individual organelles.


Computers with Internet Access, poster board / newsprint, and markers.


Students will be encouraged to participate in a discussion about cells. In a teacher led activity, students will create a T-chart that lists what they know about cells, and what areas they are unsure about. Discussion should lead to the presence of some cells that form greater systems and beings, and some cells do not. At this point, an introduction of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells should be made. After a brief and general introduction, students can proceed directly to the Exploration.


Students should be paired off or placed in small groups (3-4) if pairing is not possible. Each pair is to receive a Cell Scavenger Hunt Handout(included). The handout contains a series of questions that can be answered directly by visiting the sites listed on the Handout and below. Each pair will thus be required to visit and read the various websites in order to complete the Handout. Aside from the Hunt, each pair is also required to create a diagram on poster board of either a prokaryotic or a eukaryotic cell. The diagram should be labeled, colored, and include a list of features that make that type of cell different from the other.

Websites: (see Cell Scavenger Hunt Handout)


Once all the pairs/groups have completed the Scavenger Hunt Handout and their respective diagram, pairs that have diagrammed one type of cell should match up with a pair of the other type. Each pair will then in-turn, present its diagram and differences to the other pair of students. (A student evaluation of the other pair's diagram is optional.) The final completed Scavenger Hunt Handouts are to be turned in to the teacher.


The study of prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells most often leads an in-depth study of cells. Thus possibilities for further study include detailed coverage of cell structure, organelles, transport, function, the nucleus, reproduction, genetic material, etc. Further studies of symbiotic theory are also facilitated by this lesson.

Cell Scavenger Hunt Handout --- Teacher's Edition

 The following is a list that matches the questions from the Handout with the respective site that provides the response. Note that on the Handout the questions are not in order. It may be necessary to point out to the students the questions are not in order.






Cell Scavenger Hunt Handout

 Name:____________________ Partner:____________________

You and your partner are challenged to answer the following questions by visiting the websites listed below. You are also required to create a diagram/figure of either a prokaryotic or a eukaryotic cell. The diagram should be on poster board or newsprint, in color, fully labeled, and include a description of the differences between the two types of cells.



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