Carbon Cycle Tutorial and Quiz

Links

Note from Mr. W on 9/11/16: A big shout out to my friend Mr. Willats and his students at Piedmont High School!

1. Introduction: Ecosystems and Biogeochemical Cycles

In the last series of tutorials, we saw how photosynthesis moves carbon from a gaseous form in the air (carbon dioxide) to a solid form in carbohydrates. During cellular respiration, the carbon in carbohydrate is combined with oxygen to become, once again, carbon dioxide. This exchange of carbon between photosynthesis and respiration is the essence of the carbon cycle, and it’s been going on for billions of years.

An ecosystem consists of both biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) components (Klamath Falls Fish and Wildlife Service)

The cycling of elements like carbon is a key feature of any ecosystem. An ecosystem consists of the living community of organisms in an area, plus the non-living components of the environment (the air, the soil, the water, and so on). The living parts (or formerly living parts) of an ecosystem are called biotic components. The non-living parts are referred to as abiotic components.

The diagram on your right shows a lakeside ecosystem. Study it for a moment, and then classify the following parts of this ecosystem as either biotic or abiotic.

 

[qwiz]

[h]Interactive Table: Biotic v. Abiotic Ecosystem Components.

[q labels = “top”]

Ecosystem Component Biotic or Abiotic?
atmospheric gases (nitrogen, oxygen, etc)  ____________
 birds  ____________
 decomposers (bacteria and fungi)  ____________
 energy from the sun  ____________
 fish  ____________
 grasses  ____________
 water lillies  ____________
 sand on the lake bottom ____________
trees ____________
water ____________
rocks  ____________

[l]abiotic

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]biotic

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Great!

[/qwiz]

The movement of carbon from an abiotic form in the air, to living matter, and then back to the air is an example of a biogeochemical cycle. Let’s take this word apart:

  • The prefix “bio” relates to life.
  • “Geo” relates to the Earth.
  • “Chemical” refers to the elements or compounds that we’re concerned with.

As an example of a biogeochemical cycle, let’s study the carbon cycle.

2. Vocabulary Check

[qdeck random = “true”]

[h]Flashcards: Ecology and Biogeochemical Cycles Vocabulary

[!!!!]card 1 [/!!!!]

[q]__________ components of ecosystems are not alive.

[textentry]

[a]Abiotic components of ecosystems are not alive.

[!!!!]card 12 [/!!!!]

[q]Abiotic components of ecosystems are not ______.

[textentry]

[a]Abiotic components of ecosystems are not alive.

[!!!!]card 3 [/!!!!]

[q]In ____________ cycles, elements or compounds cycle between living organisms and the non-living environment.

[textentry]

[a]In biogeochemical cycles, elements or compounds cycle between living organisms and the non-living environment.

[!!!!]card 4 [/!!!!]

[q]_________ components of an ecosystem are (or were) alive.

[textentry]

[a]Biotic components of an ecosystem are (or were) alive.

[!!!!]card 5 [/!!!!]

[q]Biotic components of an ecosystem are (or were) ______.

[textentry]

[a]Biotic components of an ecosystem are (or were) alive.

[!!!!]card 6 [/!!!!]

[q]An _________ consists of the living community of organisms in an area, plus the non-living components of the environment

[textentry]

[a]An ecosystem consists of the living community of organisms in an area, plus the non-living components of the environment.

[!!!!]card 7 [/!!!!]

[q]_________ moves carbon from a gaseous state in the air and makes it into solid carbohydrate.

[textentry]

[a]Photosynthesis moves carbon from a gaseous state in the air and makes it into solid carbohydrate.

[!!!!]card 8 [/!!!!]

[q]Carbohydrates are broken down for energy, oxygen is consumed, and carbon dioxide and water are released during _________ __________.

[textentry]

[a]Carbohydrates are broken down for energy, oxygen is consumed, and carbon dioxide and water are released during cellular respiration.

[/qdeck]

3. The Basic Carbon Cycle: Producers, Consumers, Respiration, and Photosynthesis

Carbon exists in a gaseous form as carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Through photosynthesis, carbon dioxide gets pulled into plants, combined with water, and transformed into carbohydrate. This process is called carbon fixation. In the diagram below, find the arrow on the upper right that says “photosynthesis” and you’ll see carbon being transformed from a gas (carbon dioxide) to solid carbohydrate (the leaves, wood, and other parts of the tree).

Photosynthesis fixes carbon, changing it from a gas into a solid.

Plants are known as producers because they’re the organisms that produce carbohydrate, the chemical energy that fuels both plants and animals. Once plants make carbohydrates, a few things can happen. One is that plants can use this chemical energy for their own purposes. Plants, in other words, will perform cellular respiration. As they do, they’ll convert carbohydrate back into carbon dioxide and water. This will release carbon dioxide back into the atmosphere.

Another thing that can happen is that animals can consume the carbohydrate made by plants—which is why animals are ecological consumers. When they do, they’ll perform cellular respiration, returning carbon dioxide back to the atmosphere. Before going further, make sure that you can identify these flows of carbon in the diagram below.

[qwiz]

[h]Interactive Diagram: Carbon Cycle 1

[q labels = “top”]

 

[l]atmosphere

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]consumers

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]photosynthesis

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]producers

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]respiration

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]consumption

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Correct!

[/qwiz]

4. Death and decomposition are also part of the carbon cycle

When plants and animals die, their bodies will be broken down by fungi and bacteria that act as decomposers. Decomposition also involves cellular respiration, meaning that the carbon in the bodies of dead plants and animals gets returned to the atmosphere as carbon dioxide.

Add these factors into the carbon cycle diagram below.

[qwiz]

[h]Interactive Diagram: Carbon Cycle 2

[q labels = “top”]

 

[l]atmosphere

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]consumers

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]photosynthesis

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]producers

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]respiration

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]consumption

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Correct!

[l]decomposers

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]death

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[/qwiz]

5. Fossil fuel formation, extraction, and combustion add more complexity to the carbon cycle

Fossil fuel formation. © Steve Greb, Kentucky Geological Survey.

During the Earth’s long history, there have been a few periods when forests and algae grew at such a rate that decomposition couldn’t keep up with the accumulation of dead organic matter on the floor of forests or the sandy bottoms of oceans.

One of these period was the Carboniferous era, which occurred between 350 and 300 million years ago. During the Carboniferous, all of that carbohydrate accumulated into vast layers. The heat and pressure generated by the weight of these layers transformed this carbohydrate into fossil fuels: coal, petroleum (fuel oil), and natural gas. The diagram above and to the right focuses on coal, but the process is similar for all fossil fuels.

Coal-fuel power plants are used to generate electricity. They emit significant amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

Though these fossil fuels were formed millions of years ago, they mostly lay undisturbed under the ground until the 1800s, when the Industrial Revolution began. Now, fossil fuels are our biggest energy source. Their extraction and processing are billion dollar industries. And combustion is now one of the biggest sources of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

As a chemical equation, combustion looks almost identical to respiration. In a car, for example, this combustion reaction occurs.

gasoline +  oxygen →  energy (heat) + carbon dioxide + water

This human-caused release of carbon is causing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to rise. While carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere were at about 280 parts per million before the industrial revolution, they recently surpassed 400 parts per million. Because carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, this is trapping heat in our atmosphere, increasing global temperatures.

Add the formation, extraction/processing, and combustion of fossil fuels to the carbon cycle diagram below.

[qwiz]

[h]Interactive Diagram: Carbon Cycle 3

[q labels = “top”]

 

[l]atmosphere

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]consumers

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]photosynthesis

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]producers

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]respiration

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Excellent!

[l]consumption

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Correct!

[l]decomposers

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]death

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]combustion

[fx] No, that’s not correct. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]extraction/processing

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Correct!

[l]fossil fuel formation

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[l]fossil fuels (coal, oil natural gas)

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Correct!

[l]factories/machines

[fx] No. Please try again.

[f*] Good!

[/qwiz]

6. Conclusion/Quiz

That’s the Carbon Cycle. There are additional parts to the cycle: for example, carbon can be trapped in rocks, and then released in volcanoes after hundreds of millions of years. But that goes beyond our goals for right now. I’ve taken most of what you’ve read above, and put it into musical form in my Carbon Cycle song. If you’re listening to this in a classroom, please listen with headphones so you don’t disturb the students next to you.


When you’re confident that you understand the material above, take the quiz below.

[qwiz random = “true”]

[h]Quiz: Carbon Cycle

[!!!!!!] question 1 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]The living organisms that make up an area, plus the non-living things (air, soil, water, etc.) that support them, make up a(n)

[c] population

[c] community

[c] habitat

[c*] ecosystem

[f] No. A population is all of the individuals of one species in one area. As a hint, think about the fact that that this question refers to a system of interconnected organisms, and the non-living things in their environment.

[f] No, but you’re close. A community is all of the interconnected populations in one area. Think of a level of biological organization that consists of this community, plus the non-living things in the community’s environment.

[f] No. A habitat is the home or natural environment of an organism (or a species). This question refers to a wider and more dynamic concept. As a hint, think about the fact that that this question refers to a system of interconnected organisms, and the non-living things in their environment.

[f] Yes. An ecosystem consists of all of the living organisms in an area, plus the non-living parts of their environment.

[!!!!!!] question 2 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In an ecosystem, an example of an abiotic factor would be

[c] bacteria

[c] large mammals

[c*] soil nutrients

[c] the cellulose in plant cell walls.

[f] No. ‘Abiotic’ means ‘non-living.’ In an ecological sense, it means a part of an ecosystem that is not a living organism (or the remains of an organism). What choice is clearly non-living?

[f] No. ‘Abiotic’ means ‘non-living.’ In an ecological sense, it means a part of an ecosystem that is not a living organism (or the remains of an organism). What choice is clearly non-living?

[f] Yes. The nutrients in the soil are an abiotic, or non-living, part of an ecosystem.

[f] No. ‘Abiotic’ means ‘non-living.’ In an ecological sense, it means a part of an ecosystem that is not a living organism (or the remains of an organism). The cellulose in plant cells was made by those cells. What choice is clearly non-living?

[!!!!!!] question 3 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In an ecosystem, an example of a biotic factor would be

[c] the nitrogen gas in the air

[c] sunlight

[c] water in the soil

[c*] ant colonies

[f] No. ‘Biotic’ means living, and it refers to living organisms, or their dead remains. Which of these choices would be biotic?

[f] No. ‘Biotic’ means living, and it refers to living organisms, or their dead remains. Which of these choices would be biotic?

[f] No. ‘Biotic’ means living, and it refers to living organisms, or their dead remains. Which of these choices would be biotic?

[f] Yes. Ant colonies would be a ‘biotic factor’ in an ecosystem. ‘Biotic’ means living, and it refers to living organisms, or their dead remains.

[!!!!!!] question 4 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Carbon fixation changes

[c] monosaccharides into polysaccharides

[c] proteins into amino acids

[c*] carbon dioxide into carbohydrates

[c] carbohydrates into carbon dioxide and water.

[f] No. Carbon fixation changes carbon that’s in a gaseous form into carbon that’s in a solid form. In which choice does carbon start out as a gas and end as a solid?

[f] No. Carbon fixation changes carbon that’s in a gaseous form into carbon that’s in a solid form. In which choice does carbon start out as a gas and end as a solid?

[f] Yes. Carbon fixation changes carbon that’s in a gaseous (carbon dioxide) form into carbon that’s in a solid form (a carbohydrate, typically glucose).

[f] No. Carbon fixation changes carbon that’s in a gaseous form into carbon that’s in a solid form. In which choice does carbon start out as a gas and end as a solid?

[!!!!!!] question 5 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Of the processes below, the one that’s most related to carbon fixation is

[c*] photosynthesis

[c] cellular respiration

[c] soil erosion

[f] Yes. Photosynthesis takes carbon dioxide, a gas, and combines it with water to create glucose, a solid. That’s what carbon fixation is: ‘fixing’ gaseous carbon dioxide into a solid form.

[f] No. Cellular respiration takes solid carbohydrates and respires them to create gasous carbon dioxide (and water). Carbon fixation takes gaseous carbon dioxide, and makes it into solid sugars. Which of these processes does that?

[f] No. Carbon fixation takes gaseous carbon dioxide, and makes it into solid sugars. Which of these processes does that?

[!!!!!!] question 6 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Photosynthesis

[c*] removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere

[c] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere

[c] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, but then removes it

[f] Yes. Photosynthesis takes carbon dioxide, a gas, and combines it with water to create glucose, a solid. That has the effect of removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

[f] No. To answer this question, keep in mind the fact that photosynthesis takes in carbon dioxide to make sugars. What would that do to levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere?

[f] No. To answer this question, keep in mind the fact that photosynthesis takes in carbon dioxide to make sugars. What would that do to levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere?

[!!!!!!] question 7 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Cellular respiration

[c] removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere

[c*] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere

[c] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, but then removes it

[f] No. As it breaks down glucose for energy, cellular respiration releases carbon dioxide. What would that do to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere?

[f] Yes. As it breaks down glucose for energy, cellular respiration releases carbon dioxide, which has the effect of increasing the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

[f] No. As it breaks down glucose for energy, cellular respiration releases carbon dioxide. What would that do to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere?

[!!!!!!] question 8 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Decomposition

[c] removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere

[c*] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere

[c] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, but then removes it

[f] No. As decomposers break down dead organic matter, they release carbon dioxide. Keep that in mind when you see this question again.

[f] Yes. As decomposers break down dead organic matter, they release carbon dioxide.

[f] No. As decomposers break down dead organic matter, they release carbon dioxide. Keep that in mind when you see this question again.

[!!!!!!] question 9 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Combustion

[c] removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere

[c*] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere

[c] adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere, but then removes it

[f] No. Combustion takes a fuel (a carbohydrate like wood or a fossil fuel like coal), and burns it with oxygen, releasing carbon dioxide and water vapor. Where would that carbon dioxide go?

[f] Yes. Combustion takes a fuel (a carbohydrate like wood or a fossil fuel like coal), and burns it with oxygen, releasing carbon dioxide and water vapor. That adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.

[f] No. Combustion takes a fuel (a carbohydrate like wood or a fossil fuel like coal), and burns it with oxygen, releasing carbon dioxide and water vapor. Where would that carbon dioxide go?

[!!!!!!] question 10 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]Of the processes below, the only one that takes carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere is

[c] Cellular respiration

[c] Consumption

[c] Decomposition

[c*] Photosynthesis

[f] No. During cellular respiration, carbohydrates are combined with oxygen, releasing carbon dioxide and water vapor. This adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.

[f] Yes. Consumption moves carbon from plants to animals. This has no direct effect on carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

[f] No. During decomposition, dead organic matter is broken down. In the process, the carbon in that matter is release as carbon dioxide, adding carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.

[f] Yes. Photosynthesis takes gaseous carbon dioxide and combines it with water to create carbohydrates. This removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

[!!!!!!] question 11 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]The vast buildup of plant material that occurred hundreds of millions of years ago set the stage for

[c] the growth of enormous forests

[c] high rates of cellular respiration

[c*] formation of fossil fuels

[f] No. During this period, there were enormous forests in many parts of our planet. These forests made the buildup of plant material possible. What was the consequence of this buildup?

[f] No. The vast buildup has no impact on cellular respiration rates. What was the consequence of this buildup of plant material?

[f] Yes. The buildup of plant matter occurred at a rate that exceeded the rate of decomposition. The result was huge layers of carbohydrate, that become heated and compressed to form fossil fuels.

[!!!!!!] question 12 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, ecological producers are shown at

[c] A     [c*] B     [c] C     [c] D     [c] E

[f] No. Letter A refers to carbon dioxide in the air. Find a letter that refers to organisms that pull this carbon dioxide out of the air to produce food.

[f] Yes. Producers (plants and other photosynthetic organisms) are shown at letter B. You can tell that they’re producers because they pull abiotic carbon dioxide out of the air, and use it to produce food (carbohydrate).

[f] No. Letter C refers to ecological consumers, animals that eat producers. Find a letter that refers to organisms that pull carbon dioxide out of the air to produce food.

[f] No. Letter D refers to decomposers. Find a letter that refers to organisms that pull carbon dioxide out of the air to produce food.

[f] No. Letter E refers to fossil fuels. Find a letter that refers to organisms that pull carbon dioxide out of the air to produce food.

[!!!!!!] question 13 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, ecological consumers are shown at

[c] A     [c] B      [c*] C     [c] D     [c] E

[f] No. Letter A refers to carbon dioxide in the air. Find a letter that refers to animals that are consuming plants.

[f] No. Letter B refers to producers, the organisms. that pull abiotic carbon dioxide out of the air, and use it to produce food (carbohydrate). Find a letter that refers to animals that are consuming plants.

[f] Yes. Letter C refers to ecological consumers, animals that eat producers.

[f] No. Letter D refers to decomposers, organisms that break down dead organic matter. Find a letter that refers to animals that are consuming plants.

[f] No. Letter E refers to fossil fuels. Find a letter that refers to animals that are consuming plants.

[!!!!!!] question 14 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, decomposers are shown at

[c] A     [c] B     [c] C     [c*] D     [c] E

[f] No. Letter A refers to carbon dioxide in the air. Find a letter that refers to a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide.

[f] No. Letter B refers to producers, the organisms. that pull abiotic carbon dioxide out of the air, and use it to produce food (carbohydrate). Find a letter that refers to a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide.

[f] No. Letter C refers to ecological consumers, animals that eat producers. Find a letter that refers to a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide.

[f] Yes. Letter D refers to decomposers, a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide.

[f] No. Letter E refers to fossil fuels. Find a letter that refers to a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide.

[!!!!!!] question 15 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, carbon dioxide gas is shown at

[c*] A     [c] B     [c] C     [c] D     [c] E

[f] Yes. Letter A refers to carbon dioxide in the air.

[f] No. Letter B refers to producers, the organisms. that pull abiotic carbon dioxide out of the air, and use it to produce food (carbohydrate). Find a letter that refers to carbon dioxide molecules in the air.

[f] No. Letter C refers to ecological consumers, animals that eat producers. Find a letter that refers to carbon dioxide molecules in the air.

[f] No. Letter D refers to decomposers, a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide. Find a letter that refers to carbon dioxide molecules in the air.

[f] No. Letter E refers to fossil fuels. Find a letter that refers to carbon dioxide molecules in the air.

[!!!!!!] question 16 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, fossil fuels are shown at

[c] A     [c] B     [c] C     [c] D     [c*] E

[f] No. Letter A refers to carbon dioxide in the air. Find a letter that shows carbon that’s been transformed into oil (petroleum), or coal or natural gas.

[f] No. Letter B refers to producers, the organisms. that pull abiotic carbon dioxide out of the air, and use it to produce food (carbohydrate). Find a letter that shows carbon that’s been transformed into oil (petroleum), or coal or natural gas.

[f] No. Letter C refers to ecological consumers, animals that eat producers. Find a letter that shows carbon that’s been transformed into oil (petroleum), or coal or natural gas.

[f] No. Letter D refers to decomposers, a group of organisms that take dead plants and animals and breaks them down, releasing carbon dioxide. Find a letter that shows carbon that’s been transformed into oil (petroleum), or coal or natural gas.

[f] Yes. Letter E refers to fossil fuels. Fossil fuels consist of coal, oil (petroleum) or natural gas.

[!!!!!!] question 17 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, the only process that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere is

[c*] 1     [c] 2     [c] 3     [c] 4     [c] 5

[f] Yes. Arrow number 1 refers to photosynthesis, the only process that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 2 refers to respiration from plants. Like all cellular respiration, this adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide gas moving from the air and being ‘fixed’ in a plant.

[f] No. Arrow number 3 refers to consumption of plants by animals. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide gas moving from the air and being ‘fixed’ in a plant.

[f] No. Arrow number 4 shows respiration from animals. Like all cellular respiration, this adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide gas moving from the air and being ‘fixed’ in a plant.

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to the death of animals,. The matter in these dead animals will be broken down by decomposers. Decomposition adds carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide gas moving from the air and being ‘fixed’ in a plant.

[!!!!!!] question 18 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, consumption is shown at

[c] 1     [c] 2     [c*] 3     [c] 4     [c] 5

[f] No. Arrow number 1 refers to photosynthesis. Look for an arrow that shows plants being consumed by animals.

[f] No. Arrow number 2 refers to respiration from plants. Look for an arrow that shows plants being consumed by animals.

[f] Yes. Arrow number 3 refers to consumption of plants by animals.

[f] No. Arrow number 4 shows respiration from animals. Look for an arrow that shows plants being consumed by animals.

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to the death of animals,. Look for an arrow that shows plants being consumed by animals.

[!!!!!!] question 19 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, release of carbon dioxide by decomposition is shown at

[c] 1     [c] 2     [c] 7     [c*] 8     [c] 10

[f] No. Arrow number 1 refers to photosynthesis. Look for an arrow that shows the dead remains of plants and animals being converted into carbon dioxide.

[f] No. Arrow number 2 refers to respiration from plants. Look for an arrow that shows the dead remains of plants and animals being converted into carbon dioxide.

[f] No. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation. Look for an arrow that shows the dead remains of plants and animals being converted into carbon dioxide.

[f] Yes. Arrow number 8 shows release of carbon dioxide through decomposition, during which the dead remains of plants and animals are converted into carbon dioxide (and other simple substances) that can re-enter the carbon cycle (or other biogeochemical cycles).

[f] No. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels. Look for an arrow that shows the dead remains of plants and animals being converted into carbon dioxide.

[!!!!!!] question 20 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, respiration from plants is shown at

[c] 1     [c*] 2     [c] 7     [c] 8     [c] 10

[f] No. Arrow number 1 refers to photosynthesis. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from plants and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] Yes Arrow number 2 refers to respiration from plants.

[f] No.. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from plants and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 8 shows decomposition. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from plants and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels. Look for an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from plants and heading back into the atmosphere.

[!!!!!!] question 21 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, respiration from animals is shown at

[c*] 4     [c] 5     [c] 7     [c] 8     [c] 10

[f] Yes. Arrow number 4 refers to respiration from animals.

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to matter from dead animals moving to decomposers. Find an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from animals and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation. Find an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from animals and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 8 shows decomposition. Find an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from animals and heading back into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels. Find an arrow that shows carbon dioxide being released from animals and heading back into the atmosphere.

[!!!!!!] question 22 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, formation of fossil fuels is shown at

[c] 4    [c] 5     [c*] 7     [c] 8     [c] 10

[f] No. Arrow number 4 refers to respiration from animals. Find an arrow that shows carbon moving from plants into fossil fuels (oil/petroleum, coal, or natural gas).

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to matter from dead animals moving to decomposers. Find an arrow that shows carbon moving from plants into fossil fuels (oil/petroleum, coal, or natural gas).

[f] Yes. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation.

[f] No. Arrow number 8 shows carbon dioxide release from decomposition. Find an arrow that shows carbon moving from plants into fossil fuels (oil/petroleum, coal, or natural gas).

[f] No. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels. Find an arrow that shows carbon moving from plants into fossil fuels (oil/petroleum, coal, or natural gas).

[!!!!!!] question 23 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, combustion of fossil fuels is shown at

[c] 4    [c] 5    [c] 7    [c] 8     [c*] 10

[f] No. Arrow number 4 refers to respiration from animals. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to matter from dead animals moving to decomposers. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No, but your’re close. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 8 shows carbon dioxide release from decomposition. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] Yes. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels.

[!!!!!!] question 24 +++++++++[/!!!!!!]
[q topic= “carbon_cycle”]In the diagram below, the process that has caused our planet’s atmospheric carbon dioxide levels to dramatically rise during the past two hundred years is shown at arrow

[c] 4     [c] 5     [c] 7     [c] 8     [c*] 10

[f] No. Arrow number 4 refers to respiration from animals. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 5 refers to matter from dead animals moving to decomposers. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No, but your’re on the right track. Arrow number 7 refers to fossil fuel formation. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] No. Arrow number 8 shows carbon dioxide release from decomposition. Find an arrow that shows carbon from fossil fuels moving from machines or factories into the atmosphere.

[f] Yes. Arrow number 10 refers to the combustion of fossil fuels. The sudden release of carbon dioxide that had been out of the carbon cycle for millions of years has caused carbon dioxide levels to rise significantly during the past two hundred years.

[x]
[restart]
[/qwiz]

Continue on to the next tutorial in the series, Food Chains and Food Webs.

40 comments for “Carbon Cycle Tutorial and Quiz

  1. xX_R31FB-D1zzLE420_Xx
    November 24, 2014 at 5:27 am

    Swag

  2. Liz
    December 14, 2014 at 2:08 am

    This is so helpful for my midterm review! I had always been confused about the Carbon cycle, but you could say that this fixated my worries and released them into the atmosphere. 🙂 Thanks, random teacher!
    An AP Bio student

    • Mr. W
      December 14, 2014 at 7:13 am

      That’s awesome, Liz! Please let me know if you have any suggestions about how I can improve my tutorials, quizzes, and flashcards!
      Thanks!
      Mr. W
      P.S. Read my bio if you don’t want to think of me as a “random teacher!”

      • Sam
        March 18, 2015 at 2:06 am

        Hi this helped a lot.

      • Poop
        March 18, 2015 at 2:08 am

        This helped a lot. Thank you.

      • Emma
        October 4, 2016 at 8:28 am

        I did a couple of the questions on the quiz and when I answered it, it said “Yes…….” and it counted it as incorrect. I did that question “wrong” a second time and then finally answered it right. You should probably change that if you want people to learn properly.

        • Mr. W
          October 4, 2016 at 7:12 pm

          Hi Emma,
          Thanks for telling me. Do you remember what the question what about?
          Let me know.
          Mr. W

  3. yourbiggestfan
    May 31, 2015 at 9:58 pm

    all your songs and quizes help me so much! i take Higher Level biology (IB) which is very difficult but thanks to your songs i manage to pass the class! i keep randomly singing these songs to my friends and they think im weird now. but this is wonderful thank you so much Mr.W!

    • Mr. W
      May 31, 2015 at 10:22 pm

      What a great story! Thanks!
      Mr. W

  4. Nicole
    October 9, 2015 at 7:56 am

    This is absolutely wonderful for teaching the carbon cycle, and very much appreciated! Thank you:)

    • Mr. W
      October 9, 2015 at 5:02 pm

      Thanks, Nicole! Comments like this make all the effort worth it! Any suggestions for improvement?
      Let me know.
      Mr. W

  5. Alexandra
    October 28, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    Hi Mr. W! Thanks for this amazingly hilarious video to help me understand carbon cycles. I have a test tomorrow and I didn’t know anything about it! When your as young as me learning about carbon cycles, it can get hard to learn and understand. Thanks! Alexandra

    • Mr. W
      October 28, 2015 at 6:48 pm

      I’m glad these have been helpful, Alexandra.
      Good luck learning biology!
      Mr. W

  6. Kanye West
    November 17, 2015 at 8:51 am

    I found this site to be very helpful and it seemed to expand my knowledge as a musical genius

    • Mr. W
      November 17, 2015 at 12:53 pm

      Wow, Kanye! This is almost as good as the comment I got from Taylor Swift!
      Mr. W

    • March 31, 2016 at 7:03 am

      i like this

  7. ChildOfMissFuller
    November 17, 2015 at 8:54 am

    Thank you so much! This helped me a lot!

    • Mr. W
      November 17, 2015 at 12:52 pm

      That’s terrific, Antonia!
      Mr. W

  8. December 8, 2015 at 7:05 am

    I absolutely loved this website after my mom showed me it i immediately changed my religion to science music videos. I feel so blessed that i have now added a second Christmas to my calendar and I’ve shut out all of my friends including my imaginary friend Lydia.

  9. MomofTwins
    April 26, 2016 at 9:15 pm

    Thank you so much for the effort you put into making a complex topic digestible for my boys, especially my son with a learning disability. It was just what the doctor ordered on a night when he was getting anxious about the Carbon Cycle quiz he had the next day; your video and song actually made him laugh at first and then he was completely engaged and still enjoying learning…teachers like you are a blessing.

    • Mr. W
      April 27, 2016 at 8:28 pm

      Hi there,
      Thanks for your great comment! Please spread the word about sciencemusicvideos, and please consider buying my songs or donating to my channel!
      Good luck to you and your boys!
      Mr. W

  10. May 6, 2016 at 7:13 am

    this website is fat….

  11. May 23, 2016 at 8:39 pm

    this is helpful

  12. October 4, 2016 at 8:25 am

    it is helpful

  13. Charlie
    October 4, 2016 at 8:26 am

    this is really helpful

  14. October 4, 2016 at 11:33 am

    lit

  15. hazel
    December 28, 2016 at 3:03 am

    Thak you very much this has helped me soooooo much I didn’t understand the carbon cycle at all but I feel a bit better now 🙂

  16. Eugene
    January 31, 2017 at 12:06 pm

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  17. Lebron James
    February 2, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    I hit dingers just like Mr.W

  18. February 6, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    Thank you so much. This is very helpful.

    • Mr. W
      February 6, 2017 at 8:16 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Thomas. Please tell all your friends and teachers about sciencemusicvideos!
      Mr. W

  19. March 13, 2017 at 6:25 am

    This is Awesome! It’s really helping me a lot!

  20. jay
    March 31, 2017 at 6:54 am

    a suh dude

  21. shyson
    April 18, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    love it

  22. Jayla Pesamino
    April 18, 2017 at 2:01 pm

    Hi this fun and by the end you will become the master of the carbon cycle

  23. June 5, 2017 at 2:53 am

    Thanks Mr.W
    Also a comment for Jackie: BACK OFF HE IS MINE!

  24. June 5, 2017 at 2:54 am

    This is a really helpful website, thank you so much. This will definitely help me in my upcoming assessment.

  25. Kailee
    June 14, 2017 at 5:16 pm

    THIS IS SO AWESOME! I was honestly so confused, but now I am nowhere close to that. Thanks for creating all of this! 🙂

  26. Donald Trump
    September 11, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    actually i really enjoy this!

    • Mr. W
      September 11, 2017 at 4:55 pm

      Wow, Donald, coming from you, that’s an awesome compliment.
      Mr. W

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