New
New
Year 11
Edexcel
Foundation

Classifying organisms as eukaryotic or prokaryotic

I can describe the common features of the cells of eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms.

New
New
Year 11
Edexcel
Foundation

Classifying organisms as eukaryotic or prokaryotic

I can describe the common features of the cells of eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms.

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Lesson details

Key learning points

  1. The common features of animal and plant cells.
  2. Animals, plants, fungi and protists are made up of cells with a nucleus in which their genome is stored.
  3. Organisms made of cells with a nucleus are classified as eukaryotic organisms.
  4. Common features of bacteria cells, including cell membrane, cell wall, plasmids and storing the genome in the cytoplasm.
  5. Organisms made of cells without a nucleus are classified as prokaryotic organisms.

Common misconception

Pupils might think that all eukaryotic cells have the same cell components.

Draw pupils' attention to the differences between the different types of eukaryotic cells. Focus on the presence of a nucleus, mitochondria, and, in plant cells, chloroplasts, as identifying characteristics of eukaryotic cells.

Keywords

  • Nucleus - A sub-cellular structure that contains chromosomes made of DNA molecules.

  • Genome - The entire genetic material of an organism.

  • Eukaryote - A cell or organism which has a cell membrane, cytoplasm and genetic material enclosed in a nucleus.

  • Plasmid - A small ring of DNA found in a bacterial cell.

  • Prokaryote - An organism whose cell has cytoplasm and a cell membrane surrounded by a cell wall. The genetic material is not enclosed in a nucleus.

Ensure that pupils are familiar with the concept of unicellular and multicellular organisms at the beginning of the lesson so that they can recognise that some eukaryotes are unicellular and some are multicellular.
Teacher tip

Licence

This content is © Oak National Academy Limited (2024), licensed on Open Government Licence version 3.0 except where otherwise stated. See Oak's terms & conditions (Collection 2).

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6 Questions

Q1.
The genetic material of a cell is composed of a chemical called ...
Correct Answer: DNA, deoxyribonucleic acid
Q2.
Which sub-cellular structure contains DNA?
ribosomes
Correct answer: nucleus
mitochondria
chloroplasts
Q3.
What is a unicellular organism?
Correct answer: An organism that consists of one cell.
An organism that consists of many cells.
Q4.
Which of the following organisms are multicellular?
Correct answer: cow
bacterium
Correct answer: mushroom
protist
Q5.
Which sub-cellular structure is the site of respiration?
ribosome
chloroplast
Correct answer: mitochondria
nucleus
Q6.
Which of the following is part of a plant cell but not part of an animal cell?
cell membrane
Correct answer: cell wall
cytoplasm
nucleus

6 Questions

Q1.
Which of the following are eukaryotes?
Correct answer: plants
Correct answer: animals
bacteria
Correct answer: protists
Q2.
Which of the following are membrane bound sub-cellular structures?
Correct answer: mitochondria
plasmids
Correct answer: chloroplasts
cytoplasm
Q3.
Which of the following are features of eukaryotic cells but not prokaryotic cells?
Correct answer: DNA enclosed in a nucleus
plasmids
cytoplasm
Correct answer: chloroplasts
Q4.
Is a cell with a diameter of 0.2 μm prokaryotic or eukaryotic?
Correct Answer: prokaryotic, prokaryotic cell, prokaryote
Q5.
What is the name given to the small rings of DNA that are sometimes found in prokaryotic bacterial cells?
Correct Answer: plasmids, plasmid
Q6.
Which type of organism has cells that have DNA enclosed in a nucleus but no cell wall?
plants
protists
bacteria
Correct answer: animals